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Monday, 16 November 2009

Dozens irate as ancient Honduras-Latvia rivalry surfaces again

Honduras is recovering from a massive hangover after the nation's notoriously fiery football fans ran amok in Tegucigalpa in the early hours of Sunday morning to celebrate Los Catrachos' 2-1 win over Auld Enemy Latvia.

Tensions between Honduras and Latvia are centuries old and many questioned the decision to bring the former Soviets over 6,000 miles to the hostile environment of Central America.

Over 30,000 fans turned up to the so-called friendly with many wearing t-shirts or sporting banners with anti-Latvian slogans such as "Death to those with plural names" and "Astafjevs sounds like a type of biscuit".

The atmosphere was fraught throughout the contest but the dismissal of Dzintars Peas angered the seven-strong travelling support and a last-gasp winner from headline-writer's friend Georgy Welcome brought things to boiling point.

Honduran fans spilt onto the streets of capital Tegucigalpa in frenzied celebration after vanquishing their hated foes. Police reported serious damage to several shops and hotels in the Latvian quarter of the city and several men were arrested for inciting racial hatred.

"We had no choice but to take them in," police chief Edgardo Villeda explained. "They were stood outside Georgys Pajtars' All-Night Latvian Food Emporium openly mocking Latvia's 159 non-marine molluscs.

"I have to say that I question the choice to play this friendly, everyone knows that a Latvia shirt is like a red rag to a bull in these parts."

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