ICYMI: ESPN’s David Faitelson threw himself into the fire when he posted the following words upon Guatemala’s historic 2-0 victory over the U.S. on Friday night:
Sometimes, it’s astonishing how much heat a 140-character tweet can generate.
Soon after sending the message, Adela Camacho de Torrebiarte and the Federación de Fútbol de Guatemala shot a letter to Faitelson’s employer, ESPN, asking for an apology. Even President Jimmy Morales joined in.
Faitelson later apologized, adding “I’m terrified because a football critique – where I could have been wrong, I could have exaggerated – but a soccer critique nonetheless, has the power to generate such levels of hatred and intolerance and even provoke reactions from authorities who I believe have much more delicate and important tasks to attend to than a simple comment.”
He ended his note – published on ESPN Deportes’ online outlet – by stating, “I am and always will be an admirer of the great history of our fellow Latin American communities. I identify with the impressive richness of Guatemala’s Mayan culture; with characters full of intelligence, genius, and creativity, like Miguel Ángel Asturias; with the courage and contributions of Rigoberta Menchu, and the strength, courage, and valor that her town had to oppose and stand up to injustice. When I’ve had the chance to be in Guatemala (whether for business or for pleasure), I’ve been received warmly, with the kindness and nobility of their people.”
This isn’t Faitelson’s first run with disparaging Central American squads; remember when he wrote that a win for Mexico over El Salvador wouldn’t count for anything? How about that time he said that beating Honduras was equally as trivial – “ganarle a Honduras es ganarle a nadie.”
It seems his arrogance knows no limits. FAILtelson is perhaps a more fitting surname.