Vital Football

Latest Arsenal FC News

Now it's time to Nick a chance

Now it's time to Nick a chance

The Villa game is possibly Nicklas Bendtners best remaining opportunity, for the time being at least, in which to put real pressure on Adebayors starting place. Though the Togolese striker is given a 50:50 chance of making it, it is still only a 'remote` chance that he will be fit according to the club. With van Persie serving the last of his 3 match ban the way should be clear for Bendtner to lead the attack. Having been left out of the Carling Cup game midweek that would seem to be Wengers intention.

Bendtner started both the Fenerbahce and United games and on the basis that strikers are expected to score that he failed to do so may put him under some extra pressure if, as expected, he starts against Villa. There were some good points in both performances but neither was of the stuff that makes an unshakeable case for selecting him ahead of Adebayor.

Nicklas has had just about half the PL playing time of Adebayor so far this season and has only scored one goal to Ade`s five. With much less playing time in CL games he hasn`t managed to score in the CL proper while Ade has 3 to his name though both also scored in the qualifying games. Outside of this Bendtner has scored twice in the one Carling Cup game played. With so little playing time it is hard to make any real judgements but some differences emerge from the two players style so far. In terms of shots on target per minutes played they are about the same. Ade seems to pass a little quicker and with greater accuracy but Bendtner has created more attempts for others than Ade and indeed has a better assists per time played ratio too. While Ade tackles more frequently and more successfully than Nicklas.

Though both look physically similar they do play a different game. Ade uses his power more effectively though Nicklas, who isn`t 21 until January, is still behind Ade physically. Bendtner has a midfielders eye for a pass though so far this season the execution, with passes poorly weighted or timed, hasn`t quite matched the invention. The ideas are good though.

Arsene appreciates the qualities Bendtner has saying before the United game 'I believe Nicklas is intelligent, he has strength, quality, good collective sense and is good in the air and on the ground. He is quick as well. That is plenty of qualities.'

With the team, in recent games, looking to play a five man midfield using Diaby in a floating role behind the striker to add some robustness to midfield the places for a lone striker are limited. Especially if there should be some willingness to repeat the use of van Persie in that role as he did to good effect in the early part of last season and last season`s pre-season tournaments.

Bendtner may find himself having to wait once more and relying again on injuries to get a run in the side based on his contributions so far but he appears willing to accept this.

"I always feel confident whoever I play. I'll play to my strength and the team will play as a unit. If we all play well that should be enough but I want to do the best I can.

"If I play I'd like to score," he said last week "If I can score and help us win the game then I'll be very happy. If I play well and someone else scores I'll be happy too.

"If you play well, you keep your place so you have to keep working hard.

"It's the same for every striker, there's no free pass at a top club."

Assuming he starts the Villa game, in which he scored the late equaliser in last seasons corresponding fixture, it would be a good time to enhance his CV.

Join Vital Arsenal

Want to comment on this article? It's easy to register , simply click the link and enjoy getting involved (you can even win prizes!)

Message Board To visit the message board, click here. Get involved

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

Date:Friday November 14 2008
Time: 10:47AM


I always feel kinda sorry for Bendter. He gets some stern looks from the other players, but as Amos says, he has some good ideas ut has trouble implementing them. He needs to start looking over his shoulder though, because in my eyes, unless the substitution is made with a specific role (like aerial presence) in mind, then Carlos Vela should soon be the man who is our greatest goal threat coming off the bench. It's good to see the competition though.
14/11/2008 10:58:00
Im afraid every time watch Ade play his passes maybe quicker, but they are always over 5 yards and never any further as he lays the ball off. Brendtner is just as tall but is more of a 2nd striker. Because of his height people class him as a target man, which he clearly is not and I think a fairer comparison is probably with RVP as they both liuke to come a bit deeper. Brendtner has better technique, dribbling and heading skills than Adebayor, which we have only seen in flashes. But his passing is ina totally different league to Adepaymemores. Long and short he always looks for the opening and to create the chances, Ades are generally lay offs. Well that's what I see Amos, others may disagree with me.....
14/11/2008 10:59:00
Amos, apologies mate, I must of missed the middle section of your article where you highlight Bendtners superior passing and technique, sorry china!
14/11/2008 11:04:00
So you got bored halfway through LG! In general I agree with you. But Ade's qualities, at least in goals scored seem more productive, yet Bendtner creates more for others. Is one more important than another? Does Ade's workrate create chances in a less direct way - making space for others for example? The reality is that strikers will be judged firstly on their goals. If Bendtner adds a respectable amount to this game it will do him no harm at all. As you say - those that disagree will let us know I am sure.
14/11/2008 11:17:00
It was a very well thought out, eloquent article (as always) I think I need glasses! :o/ I do think he was more productive in front of goal last season compared to the chances he has had this season already. It will happen for him though, of that I have no doubt. You picked up on something no one else has recently, he does seem to get more dirty looks off of team mates for mistakes that others wouldn't even get a 2nd glance for. Why is that?
14/11/2008 11:21:00
I want a Vela - Bendtner combination for Villa
14/11/2008 11:32:00
I feel very positive about Bendtner, he always makes something happen from the bench, his challenge now is to spread that effectiveness over 90 minutes. The fact that he has the correct ideas is a fantastic starting point, execution can come with practise, inspiration can't. But, he isn't ready to replace Adebayor regularly yet, that in itself is not a dig at Nicklas. Adebayor is one of the most effective strikers on the planet at the moment, he may not be graceful or serene as we became accustomed to with Henry (though he also doesn't bottle big games as we became accustomed to with Henry) but he is incredibly effective.
Little Dutch
14/11/2008 11:43:00
LD he seems to be in that position that Theo finds himself in. He appears to have agreater impact over 30 minutes than 90 minutes, an impact sub if you like! I spose that is just the way players develope and learn before applying that to 90 minutes of fotoball against quality opposition! I think Henry's peformances against Spurs every year, Man Utd most years and Real Madrid, Inter Milan to name a few were good indications that he didn't always bottle big games mate!
14/11/2008 11:53:00
Well not bottle them as badly as say Cronaldo does every year?
14/11/2008 11:54:00
I agree with you guys. Bendtner's main challenge now is to produce the kind of impact he's delivered as a sub. I thought he's steadily improving in terms of work rate, passing and varying ways to create chances. Ade learnt to use his physical presence last year and I think Bendtner will do the same. I'd just like to see Nick improve the execution of those good ideas in his head and the understanding with other members of the team, which will come as he gets more games. The only potential weakness I can see in him is the passion for the game. I was quite amazed to hear him say that he doesn't watch football (other teams, other leagues, etc.) apart from the material given by the coaches. Most of the players, like Clichy, Cesc, etc. are passionate football fans themselves and they're keen to learn from other players/teams they watch and I think that's important. Bendtner has worked much harder than when we first saw him return to the club after his loan spell at Birmingham but I'd still like to see him work harder on and off the pitch.
14/11/2008 12:07:00
Page 1/3
  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. 3

Login to post a comment

Recent Arsenal Articles

Stats: Arsenal v AC Milan

All the stats from Arsenal (3) vs (1) AC Milan, Emirates Stadium, 15/3/18 Att:

Arsenal v AC Milan - Team Sheets

Arsenal are at the Emirates Stadium with AC Milan the visitors today, this is an 8.05pm kick-off - the line-ups have been confirmed.

Who Makes Southgate's Squad For March

England manager Gareth Southgate has now confirmed his squad for the upcoming games in the month of March.

Could Arsenal Star Have Signed A Pre-Contract With AC Milan?

I'm certainly not saying that's the case, but with Jack Wilshere's contract at Arsenal still sitting on the table, it's a strange set of quotes from AC Milan's Gennaro Gattuso.

Arsenal Archived Articles

Vital Arsenal articles from

Site Journalists

Write for Vital Arsenal
Write For Vital Arsenal
Apply Here

Current Poll (see more polls)

EL - AC Milan MotM
Suggested By: Site Staff
Sub - Chambers20%
Sub - Elneny0%
Sub - Kolasinac0%
ScoopDragon Premier League Network Sites
Write for Vital Football
Latest F1 News
Latest Vital Boxing News
The Vital Football Members League

Recent Arsenal Results (view all)

Arsenal Fixtures

Vital Football Comment