by Renee Israel
Danish national footballer Nicklas Bendtner was the recipient of
one of the harshest punishments ever meted out on a soccer player by UEFA, for
an underwear stunt on the pitch last week in a UEFA Euro 2012 match.
Bendtner, who is a striker for Denmark, celebrated his second goal
against Portugal in the 2012 Euro Championships, by raising his shirt and
pulling down his shorts slightly to reveal the top his Paddy Power-adorned
But while Bendtner certainly expected a slap on the wrist for his
stunt, he certainly didn't expect UEFA to come down so hard on him, and was
stunned, like everyone else, when he was not only fined, but given a one-match
UEFA Issues Statement re Bendtner Incident
A statement issued by UEFA regarding the Bendtner Paddy Power incident
said: "Following the opening of disciplinary proceedings concerning the improper
conduct of Denmark's Nicklas Bendtner at the UEFA Euro 2012 Group B match
against Portugal in Lviv on Wednesday 13 June, the UEFA control and disciplinary
body has decided to suspend the player for one competitive fixture."
"This suspension applies to the next 2014 FIFA World Cup match, including the
qualifying competition, for which Bendtner is eligible. The player has also been
This is the second highest penalty imposed by UEFA during the current Euro
2012 competition. The Russian football association was slapped with a $151,000
fine when its fans attacked stadium workers in Wroclaw after the game against
the Czech Republic in the early part of the competition.
In 2008, the Croatian football association was fined around $18,000 after its
fans displayed a racist banner during a match against Turkey in the quarterfinal
Euro 2008 match.
Paddy Power Supports Nicklas Bendtner
Paddy Power, the Irish sports betting group which has found itself in the
middle of the storm, has come out in support of the player, expressing its
surprise at the harsh sentence.
"We are appalled with the severity of Nicklas Bendtner's fine for displaying
Paddy Power on the waistband of his lucky underpants yesterday," said the group
in a statement regarding the Paddy Power logo. "This is a hysterical and deeply
cynical move by UEFA dictated by pure commercialism and is far greater penalty
than recent UEFA fines for far more serious incidents."
Bendtner said he would appeal the fine, and Paddy Power said that it would be
"contacting Mr. Bendtner to offer him our full support for his appeal."