Wednesday 17 January 2018

Wenger's surprise at Bendtner's Forest deal

Nicklas Bendtner
Nicklas Bendtner

Arsene Wenger admits he was surprised to see Nicklas Bendtner sign for Nottingham Forest and says the former Arsenal striker has a point to prove if he faces the Gunners in the League Cup tonight.

Bendtner, 28, spent nine years at Arsenal but was unable to ever hold down a regular place in Wenger's side before signing for Wolfsburg in 2014.

The Denmark international scored just twice in his final full season at the Emirates Stadium either side of loan spells at Sunderland and Juventus.

After two years in Germany, Bendtner is back and playing in the Sky Bet Championship for Forest, who welcome Wenger's side to the City Ground for their third-round EFL Cup tie this evening.

And Wenger believes it was the lure of guaranteed football that saw the forward move to the East Midlands. "It was a surprise to me that Nicklas signed for Nottingham Forest, but at some stage Nicklas needs to restart his career," he said. "Sometimes when you are a player of his quality, you just need an opportunity. He is a top-quality player, but he needs to play."

Bendtner has made just two substitute appearances so far for Philippe Montanier's side but has said he would celebrate against his former club if he were to score.

Wenger feels Bendtner will go out with a point to prove adding: "Of course he has a point to prove. Nicklas is humble enough and focused enough to show he can fight again."

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