Nobody likes being a bench-warmer – though there are worse ways to make a living – but West Ham forward Lucas Perez seems to have got the half-time pick-me-up he needed today during his team’s match against Arsenal.
The unused substitute was caught on camera by former porn star Mia Khalifa, who is now forging a career as a sports broadcaster.
The Lebanese-born 25-year-old uploaded a video of herself walking down the tunnel at the London Stadium to Instagram, and in the last second of the video Perez can be seen smiling from ear to ear, like a naughty school boy, as he spots her advancing towards him.
There was plenty more for the Hammers to smile about at full time, as they came out 1-0 victors against the Gunners.
Khalifa had every faith they would triumph, predicting a 3-2 win prior to the match.
Indeed, she frequently references her growing love of football with her 12.6 million Instagram followers and has adopted West Ham as her team.
Explaining her choice to Arsenal Fan TV, she said: “I love teams that suck. I like the underdog.
“As an American, I would feel like a complete fraud if I jumped on the bandwagon of a team that was good.”
She went on to divulge who her favourite player is.
She said: “Felipe Anderson. He’s got eight goals, he’s top of the Prem. I just really want to know what kind of conditioner he uses on his hair.”
Speaking to the Daily Star in July, she cited 2005 football film Green Street as one of the reasons she chose to follow the London club.
She said: “I watched Green Street hooligans when I was young and ever since then I’ve loved West Ham.
“They (fans in Green Street) were just so rough around the edges and a little badass, and also I love the song, Bubbles.”