Danish FA to Bendtner: keep your shorts on
Talk about getting your knickers in a twist.
The Danish Football Association was in damage control mode
Thursday after Nicklas Bendtner dropped his pants in a goal-scoring
stunt it says breached an exclusive sponsorship deal as well as
UEFA’s rules against ambush marketing.
Celebrating his second goal in Denmark’s 3-2 loss Wednesday
against Portugal, Bendtner lifted his shirt and lowered his shorts
slightly, revealing the name of an Irish betting firm across the
top of his underpants.
Not only is that against UEFA rules, which bar players from
wearing any sponsor advertising on their kit. It also didn’t go
down well with a British gambling company, one of the official
sponsors of Denmark’s national team.
”We have an exclusive deal … and this is of course a breach
of it,” association spokesman Lars Berendt told The Associated
”And it’s also a breach of UEFA’s commercial rules, rules
against exposing personal messages,” Berendt said.
As of Wednesday morning, the European soccer body had not raised
any complaints over the issue, he added.
It wasn’t immediately clear whether Bendtner would face any
action for the display. The Arsenal center forward, who was loaned
to Sunderland last season, insisted Thursday that it wasn’t a
”I was happy after having scored 2-2 … so I celebrated like I
normally do,” Bendtner said.
”But it was not a conscious thing on my part. It was simply
some underwear that give a little luck. I also wore them in the
first match and have worn them before.
”Of course I can see it’s a bit unfortunate. But there is no
agreement or anything like that. It was just for myself,” he
Minutes after Bendtner’s celebration, the Irish bookmaker sent a
Twitter message with a photograph claiming that Bendtner was
wearing his lucky underwear.
According to Danish newspaper Ekstra Bladet, Denmark’s FA told
Bendtner he’ll have to wear different underpants in the team’s
final Group B match against Germany on Sunday.
Germany tops the group with six points while Denmark and
Portugal both have three.