Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Wenger: Bendtner had it all in his locker

Arsene Wenger has provided a very understanding overview of Nicklas Bendter’s career as the two come face to face tonight in the EFL Cup.

The former Arsenal man signed for Nottingham Forest this month after a terrible spell at Wolfsburg ended with the Bundesliga side cancelling his contract. It was the latest in a series of mishaps that have plagued his career, but Wenger believes there’s still time for the 28 year old to realise some of the potential he saw in him.

Speaking about his first impressions, the Frenchman said, “He was very young , 16 or 17 years old and I thought he was very interesting because he has a good technique, good stature, good pace, good in the air, good link play – he had it all in the locker.

“He had good periods in his career, and then periods when it went less well for him. He could explain it better as to how he assesses his career because he is an honest guy.

“When he makes mistakes, he is big enough to say it is his fault. Sometimes it was not his fault but you felt he had it all in the locker to make a fantastic career.

“Yes, the perception people have of him is that he is overconfident, but I don’t think so. He was sometimes impatient when he was with us. Sometimes he was disappointed not to get the chance and you can understand that.

“It is difficult – I am not here to judge people. Sometimes you manage to get it, and sometimes we do not find the key. Then you have to leave the key to someone else who has the potential to find it.”

And he backed him to come good at Forest, saying, “Sometimes when you are a player of his quality, you just need an opportunity. We know he is a top-quality player, but he needs to play.”

For his own part, Bendtner seems determined to make up for all that lost time.

“I pictured my career going in a different way, but it didn’t. So I’m going to make the best out of the rest of my career and do the best I can. There are many goals I have set myself over the years. Many things I have said and been killed for.

“I actually don’t regret saying I want to be the best striker in the world, because that’s what everyone wants. It’s just that no one wants to say it.”

And if he scores tonight against Arsenal?

“I have a lot of love and respect for Arsenal as a club,” he said. “If I score against Arsenal I will celebrate, but I promise I won’t be causing chaos.”

A nice reference to Emmanuel Adebayor’s celebration which caused ructions when he played for Man City. There’s something to admire about the fact he still can’t resist a little dig at his former teammate.

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Cornelius P. Snuffington III

Wenger’s loyalty to his players is admirable and impressive.

Top Raman

Actually if you notice, he doesn’t say a bad word against anybody. What a man.

Watch this series on YouTube: “the greatest teams by Arsene Wenger” and you’ll know what I mean. He finds praise for anybody and everybody. So much to learn from a man I will never meet in my life 🙂

Godfrey Twatschloch

Although not saying anything bad about him I’ve never heard him express any admiration or respect for Mourinho.

Cornelius P. Snuffington III

In 2005, he said this about Mourinho: “When you give success to stupid people, it makes them more stupid sometimes and not more intelligent.”

There was a backstory behind the quote of course, but honestly, does it matter? The point is, Mourinho is such an awful person that even Wenger, a man who if he were murdered would probably compliment the gunman on a nice shot, can’t help but think he’s a twat. And this no doubt only raises Wenger’s standing in the esteems of all right-minded and rational people.

Godfrey Twatschloch

Too right!


Along with some cigarettes and silly pants…


Agree with you

AW will always have his critics, but imagine if you have a boss at your workplace who stands by your side through your difficulties while motivating you to improve yourself. That’s very rare, what AW does. He may not have won as many trophies as other coaches, but he has certainly won over many people simply for who he is

Cornelius P. Snuffington III

He’s certainly not going to be one of those managers writing a book every two years to have a go at his great former players. Isn’t Fergie due for a new one sometime soon? Maybe he’s waiting for Rooney to be done with the club.

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

He already said Rooney was a slow learner.

David C

just look at how the opposite works. Mourinho continuously throws his players under the bus and is then surprised when they won’t play for him.

I wonder if Bendtner’s career would have been different if he put away that last minute effort against Barca…


This and this again. What makes me proud to be an Arsenal fan is because we have a man who has dedicated 20 years of his life to building values that transcend winning trophies and educate on how to treat human beings with respect and diginity. These values are far more worth loving and holding on to than a trophy, and when I express my fanhood and fidelity to Arsenal its precisely to these things that i’m referring to not just a trophy cabinet. And yet i’m starting to hear from even long term Wenger loyalists that its time for… Read more »

Arsene's Coat Zipper (The Real One)


So true. Other fans (sometimes even our own fans) just don’t seem to get this. Trophies would be lovely, but to get them the Arsene and Arsenal way, would be so much more special.

John barnes

I doubt that. He has not been too nice to the likes of Joel Campbell and Pores.

Andy Mack

He hasn’t said anything negative about Campbell.
Quite the reverse, he’s always been very positive about him.
Who’s Pores?


Too much too young.

52k a week would turn most people’s heads, which is a shame as he could have been remembered for more moments like scoring in 6 seconds v Sp*rs rather than coming out of clubs with his trousers down.


Or showing off his underwear at a major tournament (ie planning that rather than thinking about footie). I’m sure we can think of more examples of things like that than on the pitch.


this has become one of the football writing clichés du jour but I think we should be careful about applying it so easily, as it can oversimplify the personalities of people that we just don’t know too much about. I myself find it hard to believe that someone with his ambition and absurd confidence wasn’t motivated beyond his weekly salary. He may have pushed hard for large money at fairly big clubs but that seems more like the attitude of someone who wants to be paid commensurate with what he thinks his abilities are, a confirmation of his status as… Read more »


You illustrate the problem well for me. Work hard, stay fit, score goals and your salary will go up.

As you said, him pushing hard for a large salary isn’t putting the most important things first (see Adebayor). Similarly the high profile marriage to a Danish royal, splitting 7 weeks after she had a baby, plus the things he got into the media for, show he wasn’t focused properly.

Being a footballer is a short career, he had the talent, could have been a top, top player and blew it.

Godfrey Twatschloch

The Danish friends I have seem to agree that he’s a talent, perhaps even a great one, but an idiot who keeps wasting chance after chance. I think he was out of the national side for a while simply because the manager couldn’t abide his shitty antics. Remember how he was actually playing alright for us in the last season, especially that vital goal against the Spuds, and then he went and pulled that taxi stunt in Copenhagen never to be seen in an Arsenal shirt again. What a waste! I hope he comes good in the end. I would… Read more »

Godfrey Twatschloch

And watching this I’m reminded of how awful my memory is. It was against Cardiff which was his final game for us as he was wheeled off with an injury following that vital goal he scored.

The Only Olivier is Giroud

Unfortunately that locker also had those Paddy Power briefs in it 😉

Seriously though, I agree with Wenger to an extent, but I’m a bit more frustrated by TGSTEL. One can’t help but feel he’s a bit of a lost cause, which is a shame considering how long we stuck by him.

I Rony

Always had a place in my heart Nicolas. Just didn’t give a fuck what anyone thought of him.


If he hadn’t have been so damn big headed and lazy he might have reached the dizzying heights of Henry or Wright. TGSTEL. HAHAHA.


I for one have always had a soft spot for Nicky B. Really thought he had a chance of making it when he was a kid. Then again I said the same thing about Lupoli so what do I know


“that jermaine pennant kid is gonna be special”

Andy Mack

Aneke and Afobe will be the future… oops


JET, Sanchez Watt, Carlos Vela … 🙁

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

Me, it was Owusu Abeyie that I was seeing as the next Henry, lol.


As a dane and Arsenal fan I’m very sad that he didn’t fulfill the great potential he had. He could’ve been amazing. I’ll never forget the goal he scored against Sp*rs (shit).

Godfrey Twatschloch

I remember him by the sideline ready to go on (was he replacing Giroud?) and thinking “oh no, please no not him, not now, this is too important to risk with that plonker”, then he scored and made me regret my wicked thoughts. Beautiful!

Godfrey Twatschloch

Not Spuds, Cardiff! His last game for us and he hobbled off injured straight after. All things considered a pretty decent final performance for us.


Never forget, Bendtner scored a hat-trick in the champions league!!! TGSTEL!!!

Kunal B

The class and dignity with which Wenger talks about his players is exemplary. Compare this to what Mourinho says about some of his players, vile and classless.


Wenger is such a beautiful man 🙂

Granit(e) hard!


He is leaving proof that making it in football is not just about having talent, but also about how you as a player conduct yourself and do the right things on and off the pitch to allow that talent to flourish…..he did have it all in my opinion, talent, physique, pace, power, everything you need to develop into a top top striker, but sadly it never happened for him because of his life choices. Still its not too late for him to turn it around because he is till in his prime and I wish him all the best.


Man, that picture…. Should have been a poster of a romantic movie or something, with a title like ‘All those opportunities that I missed’.

Bergkamp 3:16

Bendtner>> Adebayor


Adebayor>>>Bendtner in terms of ability… just a shame Adebayor became a mercenary


I think Bendtner had the raw potential to be better than Adebayor but he never fulfilled it. I hope he do well except against us.


Stop. Just stop it. Only RVP was better than Adebayor after Henry left. I’d gladly take 07/08 adebayor over what we have presently.

Andy Mack

Adebayors conversion rate wasn’t great. If Eduardo had been fit with that many chances then he’d easily have doubled Adebayors total, but he wasn’t 🙁
I’m far happier with our present options.


I’ve been commenting on Arseblog news for years now and my display picture has been Bendtner after scoring against the Spuds:).
Don’t know why but has been a great memory for me. Young player scores 6 seconds after coming on against the old enemy.

The Ghost of Peter Storey

He had everything in his locker. It’s just that he normally left it there.

I can’t help but feel that with a little more modesty and humility (& a pass from Adebayor against Birmingham) things could have been different.


What’s the meaning of TGSTEL

Sideshow Mo

“The Greatest Striker That Ever Lived”


who coined the term?


I was under the impression that he did, but maybe it was Andrew Mangan in one of his podcast impersonations.


He said it in an interview

kano gooner

The Greatest Striker That Ever Lived!


lets be honest, we were glad to see the back of him.
but now arsenal fans are quite fond of the guy.
he may not be the best striker in the world, but to us guys he will always be ‘TGSTEL’!

I hope he scores in a 6-1 thrashing of forest, but looking how we are atm its more likely he will score a hatrick and theyll do us 3-2.

Merlin's Panini

Bendtner really is a massive waste of talent. I hope for his own sake he can make something of the last few years of his career because he potentially could offer a lot. He’s in his “prime” now and needs to start producing. Perhaps the Championship will be the reality check he needs. If he doesn’t take it seriously and make a success of this chance then his career will probably go down the toilet. Had he applied himself properly he could have been hitting 20 goals plus per season for us. I’m looking forward to seeing Lansbury again. I… Read more »

Granit(e) hard!

My sentiments exactly for precisely the same reasons, so i also will be rooting for them……except where they come up against us in any of the cross league competitions, of course!


It started to go wrong after that miss against barca…he never got as many chances as you’d expect. He was great for us in the tail end of the 09-10 season. Think he snapped after wenger started RVP over him in the carling cup final.
Shame he had the ability to be the world class striker we’ve all been crying out for. He and Adebayor wasted their potential.

Cliff Bastin

He’s definitely going to score right? It’s one of those things. So a comfortable 4-1 win it is then.

Le Jim

I’ll always love Nicky B in a way. I think I was about 10 when I went to that Tottenham game when he came off the bench and scored. We got absolutely ripped off by scalpers, but he made every penny (that wasn’t mine) worth it. Definitely beat the only other game I’ve been to, when Peter fucking Crouch put three past us ?


I always felt the “Great Dane” was never good enough at Arsenal. Not sure what people used to see in him when he used to waste so many chances!

Ox Sans Box

So are there going to be chants of “Nicklas Bendter he swims when he wants” tonight or nah?


TGSTEL > The Greatest Striker That Ever Lived


Out of topic, but do you guys think there’ll be streams for this game? Will it be on tv?


Cric free lists one but no idea what the quality will be like.


Just illustrates how difficult it is to realise and develop talent. Promising start, a number of years on loan in the wilderness, and his career is now in the championship. Bendtner was part of the Denilson generation that were depended upon too soon. Crucially (bc of stadium build) Wenger did not ensure experience in all areas of the team and the results were telling. It took him several seasons to realise this error and still 5 more painful years to restructure starting with Arteta and Per both extremely influential in recreating the current team. In more recent seasons, Wenger has… Read more »

Godfrey Twatschloch

I reckon the only thing standing in his way is he himself. If he can curb the antics and just play he’ll probably do alright.


Mislaid the key to that locker at some point.


If Bendtner had scored half of his chances we would have won quadruples I tell you. He should be in jail for squandering titles, trophies and glory.
A wasted talent.

Antispuds returns

We are playing against lord bendtner. I’m really frightened to be honest. Fell wary for our defence


It’s the same in any field: promise must be realized before it can be regarded as talent. We all know of careers that faltered because either the promise wasn’t there or it was squandered. Sadly, it seems a little as if Bendtner falls into the latter category. Will be fun to watch him again tonight though!


I like Bendner. I do remember all the good things he did for our club.


I don’t know, might be only me though, but I feel for him and I still have some love for him on #Gooner terms. Good luck to him for his Nothingham future.


As the old sports adage goes, potential is the greatest burden of all.

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