Local rivalries between the US and Mexican national teams blew up after the visitors lost 2-0 in the World Cup qualifier on Wednesday, with America’s Frankie Hejduk finding himself on the receiving end of a cheeky slap from a Mexican coach in the tunnel back to the changing rooms.
The video itself looks to be the byproduct of a peeping-tom, who stealthily positioned himself in a protected position from which he caught the rogue bitch-slap.
As Hejduk was walking down the tunnel, assistant coach Paco Ramirez flung out an open left hand which caught the Columbus Crew defender full on the cheek. To his credit Hejduk did not retaliate, and the flair up was quickly dispersed.
Hejduk has since explained his version of the events.
Hejduk: “I was just trying to pump the crowd up [as he was leaving the field]. I was actually saying, ‘F*** yeah!’ I think they thought I was saying, ‘F*** you.’ It was a misunderstanding and I can see why they would be a little bit upset if they thought I was saying the other one, which I wasn’t.
"At the end of the day, no one was hurt. There was a little love tap and that was it. I still have my face. No damage done. It was fun. That’s just how emotional this game is and that’s how passionate they are about their sport. It was none of their players—I want to make that clear to everyone.”
The “little love tap” can be seen here.