Arsenal FC striker Nicklas Bendtner insists that he has been made to look like a psychopath.
Bendtner has been at the club since 2004, when he joined the Arsenal youth ranks as a 16-year-old kid. But for someone who spent a decade at the club, he doesn’t feature in the fan-favourite list for the Gooners. The Danish international was always highly regarded by the Arsenal coaching stuff and there was certainly no lack of self-confidence in him as well. But now at the age of 26, it can be said that, he has lived up to the expectations. To make things worse for Bendtner, his off the field antics have earned him a lot of criticism, and the striker has also gathered an image of someone who never walks the talk.
After spending time on loan at Birmingham and Juventus, where he made only nine appearances in the league and failed to score a goal, Bendtner returned to Arsenal this season and surprising Wenger kept him in the squad. Although his place in the squad was more to do with the fact that Arsenal could find a buyer for him, who was willing to pay his high wages and would qualify for Bendtner’s high demands. The striker has so much confidence in his ability that he has refused “smaller” clubs and it seems regular first team football wasn’t a criterion.
Nicklas Bendtner, who will be part of Danish team that will face England tonight, has also revealed that his poor image off the field hasn’t helped in negotiating a move to other clubs.
“I have, for example, talked to clubs who say they have heard this or that story about me. So I have to tell them that it is not true. Of all the things that I have been associated with I have only done one thing wrong and that was in Copenhagen [an arrest for drink driving]. Regardless of this I have, bit by bit, in people’s eyes been made into a psychopath.” – The Arsenal striker said.
But despite his lack of involvement in first team football, Bendtner remains confident about his ability to make it big in this sport and insisted that he isn’t bothered about people’s opinion about him.
“If you are in an industry you surely want to reach the top. I am still the same but I have just not played the games. It hasn’t affected my self-esteem, apart from the fact that I can’t wait until I get a break – an opportunity. I am just waiting to be unleashed. This is why I don’t care about anything else but football. I just want to play football. I’m ready for a new chapter. For something completely different. A fresh start. No team-mates who I know or know of me and the club does not know me and doesn’t have those stereotypical notions about me.” – He added.
Bendtner is disappointed about the fact that he didn’t get too many opportunities with Arsenal this season, but agrees with the fact that at times he didn’t deserve that opportunity either. But he is confident that he will shine after finding the right club at the end of this season, when his current contract with the Gunners expires.
“Yes, you can probably say that. I do not feel that I have had a very fair chance. There have been times when I feel like I should have played more and there have been times when I have not been entirely fair to the club. When I was younger I wasn’t as professional as I should have been.
“My self-esteem and my confidence as a footballer has not changed but there are not many who know that, as the only picture of me is all about partying and that I am completely indifferent to football. That couldn’t be further away from the truth. When I find my right club, I am sure that everything will be all right.” – He said in an interview during the training session with his national team.