England international David Beckham found the criticism too much to take in his first home game back with Los Angeles Galaxy, which came against, of all teams, AC Milan on Sunday.
The 34-year-old tried to hurdle a barrier to get to a group of fans who had been jeering him throughout the match and appeared to make a "come on" gesture. Security had to hold the star back as he tried to get across to the supporters, while one fan had to be stopped from getting out of the stand to confront the star.
A hardcore section of the crowd booed Beckham every time he touched the ball and held aloft signs reading "Go Home Fraud'' and "23: Repent'' in reference to his shirt number.
Another read: "Hey Becks, Here Before You, Here after You, Here Despite You'' while one stated: "Is evil something u are...or something u do?''
Galaxy fans refuse to forgive Beckham first for opting to return to Europe to play for AC Milan and then for making no secret of his desire to stay at the San Siro.
The apparent snub has angered some Galaxy fans, notably a hardcore that sit in the so-called LA Riot Squad section.
Beckham explained afterwards in comments broadcast on Sky Sports News: "I tried to shake one of the guy's hands but he didn't want any of it. That's the way it is.''
It is not the first time that Beckham has reacted badly to such behaviour from the stands. He escaped punishment for making an obscene gesture to abusive England fans after 3-2 defeat by Portugal at Euro 2000. And he has never hidden his disappointment at jeering fans since.
After the incident, Beckham was escorted into the changing rooms but did reappear for the second half while the group of fans who had upset the player were joined by a team of yellow-jacketed security staff.
Even so, Beckham had a hand in both Galaxy goals, scored by Alan Gordon and Bryan Jordan, as they twice came from behind to draw 2-2 with the Rossoneri. Thiago Silva and Filippo Inzaghi scored for Milan.
After the second Galaxy goal, Beckham turned and shrugged his shoulders in the direction of the section of crowd that had been jeering him.
The former Manchester United star was substituted after 75 minutes and walked off to a mixture of cheers and boos.
On the boos, Beckham said: "It's to be expected. Sometimes it goes beyond it. The majority of the fans have been great.''