After Holland won a controversial come-from-behind Round of 16 match against Mexico on Sunday, Dutch airline KLM celebrated the win on Twitter by Tweeting, “Adios Amigos.” The Tweet, as the Associated Press noted (see photo), had an image “of a man with a mustache wearing a sombrero” next to “Departures.”
KLM, an airline that has a daily direct flight between Mexico City and Amsterdam, apologized after much uproar, admitting that the Tweet was “meant to be a joke.” The airline reportedly deleted the Tweet nearly 30 minutes after it was first posted.
“In the best of sportsmanship, we offer our heartfelt apologies to those who have been offended by the comment,” Marnix Fruitema, director general of KLM in North America, said in a statement.
Mexico fans were already incensed because they felt their team was robbed of a just result when Holland was awarded a penalty kick after theatrical superstar Arjen Robben took what appeared to many to be a dive in extra time in the penalty area. Holland converted on the penalty kick and won a game they had trailed 1-0 minutes before. An incensed Mexico coach Miguel Herrera accused Robben of cheating after the match. And Mexico captain and former FC Barcelona defender Rafa Marquez, who committed what the referee believed to be the decisive foul, later told reporters that Robben told him that he did not foul him on the decisive play.