Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has hailed the signing of Dennis Bergkamp as one of the most significant in the club's history.
The Gunners brought the Dutch magician to Highbury two decades ago, with former manager Bruce Rioch securing the transfer coup in north London.
Wenger arrived a year later and was instantly struck by the player's talent, admitting Bergkamp was instrumental in taking Arsenal to the next level as a football club that became a force among some of the biggest names in Europe.
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“It was one year before I started here, so that shows you it was 20 years ago and it was one of the historic signings of Arsenal Football Club,” Wenger told Arsenal Player.
“Dennis is a player who is admired by all the other players and was the first push of Arsenal into the modern, international era.
“He was lucky as well because when he arrived here, he had a bunch of English players, British players who were exceptional as well. He brought creativity to this group of very strong players and it was a good marriage.”
Bergkamp won both the Eredivisie and the UEFA Cup during his seven years at Ajax, before moving to Inter Milan in 1993. Two years later, he joined the Gunners and would go on to become a club legend before retiring in 2006. In that time, he won three Premier League titles and four FA Cups.
After calling time on his playing career, the 79-cap Dutch international moved into coaching and he is currently the number two at his old club in Amsterdam. Famously, he's also afraid of flying - a fear which caused problems for Arsenal on their Champions League journeys in the late 90s and early 00s.
Arsenal fans: Do you agree with Wenger's view that Bergkamp changed the fortunes of Arsenal in the 90s? Give us YOUR opinion in the comment box below!
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