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Leyton Orient play down owner Francesco Becchetti's kick at Andy Hessenthaler

Leyton Orient play down owner Francesco Becchetti's kick at Andy Hessenthaler
By PA Sport Report

27/12/2015 at 13:40Updated 27/12/2015 at 19:25

Sky Bet League Two club Leyton Orient have played down an incident involving club president Francesco Becchetti and assistant manager Andy Hessenthaler after the Boxing Day victory over Portsmouth.

Television cameras captured an exchange between Becchetti, who had taken a seat behind the dug-out at the Matchroom Stadium, and Hessenthaler, after which the Italian made his way on to the pitch and appeared to aim a kick at head coach Ian Hendon's number two.

However, Orient issued a statement on behalf of the two men on Sunday in a bid to clarify the situation.

It read: "Mr Becchetti and Mr Hessenthaler would like to clarify the reports in the media following the Boxing Day game.

"The event reported in the media was very much in good humour for both the president and assistant manager and part of an ongoing and good natured exchange between the two over the past few weeks.

"There was absolutely nothing untoward about the exchange and the two men get along very well professionally on the pitch and personally off the pitch.

"Mr Becchetti and Mr Hessenthaler were extremely pleased with the result of the game and were celebrating a very well deserved and exciting win."

Hessenthaler also dismissed the incident as "banter", telling Sky Sports News: "It's a little bit of banter - a bit of stuff that's been going on for the last few weeks between us and probably looked worse than it was.

"He's a passionate guy and we all are. We're all desperate to win. It was a little bit of fun and games at the end. He was getting involved and we've got to concentrate on what we were doing.

"He's a passionate guy and he wants Leyton Orient to do well."

On the pitch, the home side came from behind to secure a 3-2 win after a stormy encounter which saw Orient's Mathieu Baudry and Pompey's Adam Webster were sent off.