WTTGT Writer: Jak Penny
He is a “world class striker” capable of extraordinary feats – at least that’s the self proclaimed opinion of Arsenal’s Danish striker.
At 23 years of age, Nicklas Bendtner should be delivering on the biggest stage on a consistent basis.
The over confident Dane has never shied away from glorifying his abilities and labelling himself one of the world’s best.
He even exceeded the scale in a confidence test conducted by Arsenal’s psychologists.
His father has came out this week and stuck a £12m label on his son’s head. Knock a few zeroes off and perhaps we’re getting somewhere close.
In reality, he is actually a rather mediocre forward with very little “world class” about him.
Whereas Lionel Messi, also 23, has the ability to make a stadium rise to its feet whenever the balls within his vicinity. Bendtner on the other hand produces nothing but moans and groans.
It may be a bit harsh to compare him to the mercurial Argentinian, but that’s the level Bendtner believes he’s at.
As a first team player for the last four seasons, he’s gone from being a bright prospect, to a subject of derision in the Emirates stands.
In that time he’s made 156 appearances and wielded 45 goals, with a majority of those games (77) coming from the substitute’s bench.
Not too bad of a return in truth; a goal every three games for a player of his age is not a bad ratio. But the underlying problem that remains is his pompous attitude and inability to produce regularly.
You could argue that his displays have been hampered by being forced to play wide at times, but when given his chance through the middle he’s failed miserably to look the finished article.
Arsène Wenger has shown faith in him to lead the line at times over the last few seasons but the Frenchman seems to be continually let down with some slumberous displays.
It’s the fact that Bendtner isn’t strong enough to do that job. He hasn’t got the touch to bring people into play, or the pace to keep up with Arsenal’s quick passing game.
Despite becoming acclaimed a super-sub by scoring some crucial goals from the bench, it’s not what a player of his supreme over confidence should be making a career out of.
It appears that his career is stagnating at the Emirates and a move away, probably to the continent where the game is played at a reduced pace, might see him fulfil the potential many saw in him five years ago.
Although confidence breeds success, over confidence can lead to delusion and Bendtner needs to realise he isn’t the player he thinks he is.