Nicklas Bendtner had a rollercoaster nine-year career with Arsenal.
The Danish striker’s new warts-and-all book blows the lid off his time under Arsene Wenger at one of English football’s top clubs…
I sometimes forget, after arriving at Arsenal as a 16-year-old, that I’m only on trial with the big guns. During one training session, we play a match with some rather unusual rules. It’s 11 on 11, but each player can only make a maximum of two touches at a time. I’m in a position to see Thierry Henry touch it three times.
‘Three touches,’ I shout.
Pat Rice, Wenger’s red-faced assistant coach, shouts at us to carry on.
‘Play on, for f***’s sake!’
A young Nicklas Bendtner had an explosive exchange with Thierry Henry during his trial
But Henry has heard me. He turns in my direction with his index finger pressed to his lips. ‘Sssssssh.’
Not long after, I do the same thing. First, the ball hits my heel, then my toe, then I make a pass.
Even though it’s all in the same movement, it’s not a clean touch and a free-kick is awarded against the academy pupil. I complain — big time. I snap that there should be equal treatment for everyone.
Henry tells me…