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

Press.

”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

publicity stunt.

”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

said.

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.