Wenger backs Bendtner to win Arsenal place

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has said Nicklas Bendtner can regain a regular place in the Gunners first team, ESPN has reported, after the Denmark international impressed on his return to action for the club.

Bendtner had been absent from the Arsenal XI for more than two years until he started against West Brom in the Capital One Cup on Wednesday evening, having had loan spells at Sunderland and Juventus in that time. But after Bendtner claimed an assist for Thomas Eisfeld’s opening goal, Wenger believes the 25-year-old can return to the first team reckoning.

Nicklas overall had a good game for a guy who has not played for so long,” Wenger said after the 1-1 draw, won on penalties by Arsenal. “He did very well on his own up front for nearly two hours. He showed heart and he has quality to come back as well.

I don’t question too much his confidence. For Bendtner the most important thing is to stay fit physically because he has the talent,” Wenger added. “I know him well. It’s important he is consistently present and works hard. He has top qualities.

Bendtner has 43 goals for Arsenal to his name, from 158 appearances, but had not started under Wenger since a goalless draw with Sunderland in March 2011. His last goals for the club also came in March 2011, a hat-trick in an FA Cup replay with Leyton Orient.

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