The lead singer of the Italian rock band that won the Eurovision Song Contest has asked to take a drug test to refute speculation that he sniffed cocaine during the show.
The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) said Måneskin lead singer Damiano David “will take a voluntary drug test after arriving home”.
It said the band “strongly refuted the allegations of drug use” that bubbled up on social media after David appeared to bend over a table during the contest.
David insisted he did not use drugs when he was asked at a post-victory news conference whether he had snorted cocaine during the broadcast.
He explained that he had bent over a table because another band member had broken a glass at their feet.
In its statement, the EBU said that Maneskin band members had asked that David be drug tested to refute the speculation.
The move came as congratulations poured in across Italy for the glam rock band.
The four-person rock band, who got their start busking on Rome’s main shopping street, were the bookmakers’ favourite going into the Eurovision finale and sealed the win with the highest popular vote in the annual competition.
Maneskin, Danish for “moonlight” and a tribute to bass player Victoria De Angelis’ Danish ancestry, won with a total of 529 points.
France was second while Switzerland, which led after national juries had voted, finished third.
“Rock’n’roll never dies, tonight we made history. We love u,” the band tweeted before heading back home from Rotterdam, Netherlands, where this year’s contest was held.
Their scrappy performances in front of a Geox store in Rome were a far cry from the over-the-top, flame-throwing extravaganza on Saturday night that literally split lead singer Damiano David’s pants.
David told a news conference this week that starting out on the street was embarrassing, since the group had to contend with other musicians vying for the same prized piece of pavement while neighbours complained about the noise.
“They were always calling the police,” De Angelis said, laughing.
Maneskin’s win was only Italy’s third victory in the contest and the first since Toto Cutugno took the honour in 1990.
The victory means Italy will host next year’s competition, with cities bidding for the honour.