How do Arsenal fans feel about Nicklas Bendtner after these new revelations?

Has Your Perception Towards Nicklas Bendtner Changed? by Dan Smith

The other day I wrote ‘Jack Wilshere The Movie‘. I wonder what Jack thinks of his former team-mate Nicklas Bendtner who’s been busy promoting his Autobiography.

Both were once seen as two hot young prospects at the Emirates yet never fulfilled their potential for various reasons. In the case of Mr Wilshere, his mind was willing, his body simply wasn’t. What ‘Super Jack’ would give to have had a career where he stayed healthy.

You could understand why he would resent Bendtner who had the opportunity so many dreamt of but kind of wasted it. At the age of just 32, the striker now plays in the 4th tier of Danish Football, not because of any physical injury but, as he now admits, the lifestyle of what comes with being a footballer cost him. You could argue his injury was a mental one.

I’m not naive, I know how a book tour works. The subject tells a few stories that make you want to purchase what he’s selling. It’s worked, I will be buying ‘Both Sides’ and will review it for JustArsenal.

Of course the media have put out lots of stories which I choose not to read as it kind of spoils what you’re about to read. One of the headlines that’s been hard to ignore though was the scale of his drinking and gambling addictions.

If you want to be cynical, maybe you feel the Dane is only now showing regret to garner sympathy to sell as many units as possible? Yet even if someone thinks they’re having the best night out of their life, the concept of gambling away 400,000 pound in 90 minutes in a casino is not something you wish on anyone. Worse, he can only recall being so drunk he couldn’t sit on his chair, yet still his money was taken afterwards to buy more chips. That indicates he didn’t have the correct ‘friends’ looking out for him.

That was in 2011, at which point he estimates he had lost 5.4 million in his life on poker. If you look at the time frame, this is when he first asked to leave Arsenal who he felt were punishing him for his part in a car crash.

He had two unsuccessful loan spells and then it became obvious that he was an Arsenal player because we couldn’t find anyone to pay his wages.

When he scored winners at home to Cardiff and Hull it started the ironic chant, ‘Nicklas Bendtner, he only scores if your s…’

The man himself has never been afraid to make fun of himself, posing with a gimmicked Ballon D’or to reference his once arrogant boast that he was one of the best players in the world.

Yet it’s sad to think that in reality, the one time this human being needed the family environment that Arsene Wenger had always provided, he had pushed away.

Little did Gooners know that when we were making cruel chants towards our own player, he was dealing with an illness, make zero mistake – addiction is an illness. Maybe even as recently as eight years ago not enough research into mental Health had been done?

Maybe young men like Bendtner, already a source of ridicule, felt unable to reach out and ask for help? I never thought Bendtner was as bad as some fans made out. My stance was if he just kept his mouth shut, people wouldn’t have mocked him as much. At the end of the day if you’re going to compare yourself to a Messi and Ronaldo, people are going to point out when you’re not reaching those standards.

Early in his career, he was contributing as a Gunner
In 2007 he scored 13 times
in 2008- 9
in 2009 – 14
2010 -12
2011- 8

It can’t be a coincidence that following an injury (where he obviously didn’t manage his spare time sensibly) and the height of his issues he lost his confidence in front of goal. It wouldn’t be until 2017 his goal tally would again reach double figures, with Rosenberg in Norway. At that point he claims to have battled his demons.

There is nothing worse than looking back on anything and having regret. Clearly Bendtner wishes he could go back and give warnings to his younger self.

I just wish he had told his story earlier and got the correct guidance.

I’m interested if this changes the perception of Nicklas Bendtner?

When we talk about Wilshere, Diaby, etc, we feel sorry for them for having an injury that was no fault of their own. Well, you could look at it that Bendtner had an injury as well. His was his mind, a young man earning so much money so young, he couldn’t cope. Like a muscle needs rehab and time to heal so does your mind.

I hope we have reached a time where society understands the illness that is addiction and I hope Bendtner’s story encourages anyone’s listening to ask for help if your struggling…

Dan Smith


  1. Well said. I too believe if Nicklas had been blessed with a mouth less open he would not have had as many troubles, but where would the world be with out the Mario Balotelli’s. Totally agree with the mental illness. As you say, He did not have people with his best interests around him, or perhaps he did and thought he knew better.

  2. When he first broke in the arsenal first team(2007 ) Giroud was in second tier of french football….Look at Giroud now and look at him….Talent is not enough

      1. @pires, plan stupid comment. Next time you will compare ozil to Balotelli??? You have lost it bec of all the hate u have got ozil.

        1. Mohsan and NY
          being frozen out on an astronomic salary isn’t a mess for you!!One can say that it’s not his fault that he is getting paid so well( to say the least),BUT he could ,in the pitch, pay back the trust the club put in him. With his talent he could /should have a career like Bergkamp or Zidan….In terms of a wasted talent he can be compared to Ballotelli dear Mohsan….

          1. You answered your own questions and allegations. Who froze ozil was it him or the club (never mind the reason). It’s the club responsibility to investigate and weight in everything before giving out a contract not the player’s. They look only have a the right to accept or decline. Ozil was and is never rude like Ballotelli, never had a discipilay issue, was never fined for misconduct and even MA never complained about his behaviour so no he can not be compared to Ballotelli. Now to you last point ozil is no where near the talent of Zizu, Zizu is once in a life time type of player. His heights could not be achieved even by Henry, Viera and Pires who for me where more talented then Ozil. Bergkamp was much better all round player as well then Ozil bit he played in a complete different position. Also if you compare Ozil with Bergkamp on international stage the Ozil takes the lead bro.

            1. “Never mind the reason”!!!!Are you serious?!!!Ozil was crap ever since he signed his contract,he’s lazy and don’t bother much about the club and fans,plain and simple…. I do agree with you about the salary being given by the club BUT for what….Jogging here and there every matchday?!!Even Saka had a better season last year (4goals and 11 assists to the mere ozil’s goal) ….MO is plainly a flop…..As for the Zidan and Bergkamp comparaison it’s not just a matter of talent BUT also behaviour and work ethic….Mourinho once compared him to Zidan but wishes are not horses….. sadly for arsenal fans

  3. Bendtner was a talent, that’s for sure. We cannot deny that. Bendtner scored 30 goals in 80 app. for Denmark. At Arsenal he slowly lost focus on the pitch and spoiled his career by having a lot of trouble in his private life.

  4. Dan, you will get comments on herein the same vein as those when Per Mertesaker opened up about his problems.

    It is still seen by some on here, as of no consequence what goes on in one of our players private life – either pay up or shut up seems to be the rallying cry from some of our fans.

    The game is littered with players who couldn’t handle the fame and fortune being a professional PL footballer brings – so it is in life in general.

    Some fall by the wayside and that’s when we see if we are, actually, a caring society or not – it seems with regards to football, we are, for sure, not a tolerant society.

    Good luck to Bedtner.

    1. Well said Ken
      Franks Jeffers ,Jermaine pennant to name a few had fame and money at an early age and personal problems to go with it just because they are rich and famous doesn’t mean they are immune to what ordinary folk like us go through in our own lives .
      Some deal with it better than others It doesn’t make them less of a human being when they can’t deal with it .
      I went through mental health problems in my late teens but came through it and its made me a stronger person today .

        1. Sue, the same goes for you – if I remember correctly?

          It’s interesting how those who have had this awful condition, always seem to be some of the nicest people one can meet and/or talk to.

          1. 👍 Ken… I always love hearing how people have come through the other side and as Dan says are “stronger” (which I can vouch for!)….as sadly not everyone is as fortunate..

            1. Are you by any chance Sue Smith?
              Cos she’s one woman and pundit I love so much..
              And seeing the way you type or reply to comments reminds me of how nicely she talks

      1. Dan, all I can say is well done my friend.
        Judging by the way you never duck any issue that you feel passionate about and how you, obviously, stand up for your views, it is clear that you have come out of your teenage years a stronger person.
        It seems Bedtner has done the same, but rather later in life than you did.
        We could name many players as I say and those of us who have not had to face such awful situations, should be very grateful and try to understand those who have.

        Power to your elbow mate, especially when you lift a pint of your favourite cider!!!!

    2. Agree with Ken and Dan both. Important thing is for a person to realise they have made mistakes and try to amend their ways. 32 is but on higher side for footballer but for a normal person he is still young and has more then half his life Infront of him. Wahtnhe has lost as a person in half the life he can probably gain more in remaining life. Good luck to all the people not only footballers who realised their worng doings and revert back to right path.

  5. Other than feeling sorry for Bendtner, as he is still a human being and deserving of pity, I am in truth not interested one bit, as a fan of the club he used to play so poorly for. He was very difficult, bordering on impossible to like, so I must be completely honest about how I feel. I freely admit this is not the way I ought to feel. Does honesty beat compassion then? I am afraid, with me, it does!

      1. Mark, No, just a man who needs to be self honest. I would be troubled were I not like that! I can recommend total honesty; try it and you might even find it beneficial.

    1. I agree with you Jon, most of us have had to struggle with the little that came our way.

      It’s difficult to emphatize with someone who had everything but threw them away because s/he lacked appreciation/gratitude.

      Are you supposed to feel sorry for the kid who never valued his toys until they stopped coming?

      Would he write a story if his life was still going as before?

      Someone has to be the bad example, sucks to be him. He messed his life up, it’s up to him to clean it up.

      I can understand him if that’s what he’s doing here – clean his life up.

      Fack, he can even afford to write a book.

  6. I always liked him because of his overconfidence that too bad he couldn’t translate in the pitch. I enjoyed him when he was playing for us but I don’t think even with his head right he would have become a top striker that could carry a team.

    1. Declan I remember him trotting onto the pitch as a substitute and I moaned that he wouldn’t make the slightest bit of a difference…….. seconds later I thankfully had to eat my words🤦‍♂️

  7. Lord Bendtner, de Prince of Denmark. This dude had physique of a baller but like they saying goes, “your friends will either make you or mire you”.

  8. One must always remember the saying that (without being religious) “thereby, but for the grace of God go I”. None of us know, if put under similar circumstances and pressures, how they will behave.
    Gambling, alcohol, narcotics, tobacco, sex, sadism or masochism can all be addictive. By the time you know you have an addictive personality it is often too late. The “black dog” of depression can also hit anyone, as I can attest because it has got my best friend for almost 12 months and all I can do is try and be supportive.
    The most important thing is to face up to the fact that you have a problem.
    Nicholas Bendtner like Tony Adams and Paul Merson before him are facing their demons and deserve our respect, as do many ordinary people, who don’t have access to the same resources. Next time you pass that homeless person or begger on the street, be a little more empathetic; their stories may amaze you.

  9. I liked Nic as a player and thought that with more application & logic he could have achieved something like the grandeur of his self opinion, but people were reluctant to forgive mistakes on (against Barca) and off the field. Completely wasted talent.

    1. When I consider it I’m being a bit disrespectful saying “Completely wasted talent”, as after leaving Arsenal he still continued to perform very well for Denmark.

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