Football

Bergkamp: My arguments with Wenger were childish

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Dennis Bergkamp, who is now assistant to Frank de Boer at Ajax, joined Arsenal from Internazionale in 1995 before retiring at the Gunners in 2006.

The former Dutch striker reviewed his last years at the club in his new autobiography – admitting tensions between himself and the Arsenal boss grew when he was left out of the side during the latter stages of his career.

"The arguments we had were only about those sorts of football-related things. Me playing or not playing. It was very childish, but it came from the heart – from both of us,” Bergkamp is quoted in the London Evening Standard in his biography ‘Stillness and Speed.

"The club were searching to find the next step. They thought: 'We've had this great team but Dennis is coming to a certain age and Thierry [Henry] is becoming the main man because when everything goes through one player, you're vulnerable'.

“So they had a problem. And at that time a lot of the old English players had left and I wasn't young enough to guide the new players so they thought I'd have a big influence, of course, in the dressing room. But they were worried how I would react to playing less!"

Bergkamp scored 201 times in 552 league games during his club career and admits sometimes voices were raised between the two of them.

"Not many times [were voices raised] but it did happen. But with respect: no swearing or name-calling. It would happen on the field when he told me I wasn't playing,” said the 44-year-old.

“Even late on, when I was 35 or 36, he would say: 'Do you still want to come to the game? Do you want to be on the bench?' And he'd leave the decision to me. I don't know what he was thinking.

“Was it like 'I'd rather not have you there' or 'I've got so much respect for you?' Of course I knew when I was 35 or 36 that I couldn't play every game. But within yourself you think you can."

'Stillness and Speed' by Dennis Bergkamp, published by Simon & Schuster UK on September 26 at £20.

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Topics:
Football
Arsenal
Dennis Bergkamp
Premier League

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This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

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