Currently playing for FC Ufa in Russia, Emmanuel Frimpong has courted controversy after appearing to touch a teammate’s groin when celebrating a goal.
Best remembered for his "dench" catchphrase rather than his first-team appearances, former Arsenal youngster Emmanuel Frimpong has been kicking up a storm in Russia – though not necessarily for the right reasons.
The 23-year-old was on the books at Arsenal for 13 years before finally leaving the Emirates for Barnsley on a short-term deal last season.
Released at the end of a campaign that saw the Tykes relegated to League One, the Ghana-born midfielder headed to Russia, signing a three-year deal with top-flight outfit Ufa.
Frimpong has fared reasonably well in Eastern Europe, playing 16 times for his new club in the Russian Premier League this season.
However, he may have landed himself in hot water for his latest antics, with the midfielder captured grabbing another player’s crotch while celebrating a goal.
Russia is notoriously homophobic, with a recent Human Rights Watch report highlighting some of the discrimination witnessed in the country.
So it was hardly surprising to see Frimpong take to Twitter later to explain the celebration and dismiss any suggestion regarding his sexual orientation.
Speaking in quotes republished on Ghanaweb.com, the ex-Arsenal man was keen to stress the celebration had been merely a joke between teammates.
“I think it’s a funny image. No need to worry about it. I’m not gay, everybody should calm down we constantly touch each other in practice. It was just an act,” he said.
Whether that is enough to convince the Russian public and Ufa’s fans remain to be seen, but with the team triumphing 3-2 over Krasnodar to edge away from the relegation zone, there is a strong chance that the majority will think little of it.
Frimpong remains a popular presence on social media with the former Gunner boasting over 750,000 followers on Twitter alone.