Nicklas Bendtner will never forget the summer transfer window of 2013 - for all the wrong reasons.
Out of favour in north London and in search of a new challenge, the Dane was on the verge of joining Crystal Palace on deadline day, but right at the 11th hour, it collapsed.
“I was very happy going to Palace,” Bendtner told our ‘In Lockdown’ podcast. “We were sat four days before the transfer window closed and I had agreed the move and everything, I was just waiting to see if Arsenal could bring in another striker.
“But unfortunately they couldn’t and I had to go back the next day. (Arsene and I) had a heated discussion on the phone due to me not wanting to come back and wanting to sign for Palace, but he couldn’t let me go because he was thinking of the club and team, so he was right and I was right in brackets, if you know what I mean.
“In that time the ideal situation would probably have been if they got another striker and I could have moved on to Palace, but that’s also sometimes those career-defining moments. If I would have gone there, the situation would have looked a lot different, so I came back to Arsenal and I was part of the team for six months until I scored a winner and got injured with my ankle and then from that moment, I didn’t go and play with the first team again.
“Obviously it was very difficult not being part of the matchday and just waiting to move, but I have huge respect for Arsene and I think he was an amazing manager and what he did for the club, a club that I’ve always loved, was phenomenal. The way he was thinking, I can look back now and say he never did anything for himself.
“He always did everything he could for for the club with his mind and what is best for the club, and that’s very admirable. He wasn’t afraid of taking big decisions in the greater good and I think that’s one of the top traits as a top manager. Even though we had a disagreement, I have tremendous respect for him and what he’s done.”
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