Arsenal forward Nicklas Bendtner is well-known for his confidence in his own abilities.
Fresh from his FA Cup hat-trick against Leyton Orient, the Danish striker believes that he and his team-mates are on the verge of producing something special, whether it be in the Premier League or in the Champions League, and that come the end of the current campaign, he and his team-mates will finally be judged – by the trophies they’ve won.
“At the end of the day, we know all of you guys are going to rate us on one thing [trophies] but that is what we are trying to achieve,” Bendtner said.
“I believe it will be different this season. We have beaten some great teams and we are in amongst it for everything. I believe we have the players and the mentality to create something special.
“The way you rate strikers is with goals and with teams, it is what they win. It’s part of the game. We want to try and get our beautiful football into trophies.”
The 23-year-old has plenty of sceptics when it comes to his footballing ability – those who say moments of brilliance from the Dane, such as the outstanding goal he scored in the League Cup semi-final against Ipswich at the Emirates Stadium, are to few and far between – but, in the absence of Robin van Persie, he is likely to lead the Arsenal line in their next two matches: on Saturday against Sunderland and next Tuesday at the Camp Nou, against Barcelona.
Bendtner scored in the stadium last season, when Arsenal briefly took a 1-0 lead, before Lionel Messi scored four to send the Gunners back to North London with their tails firmly between their legs.
Nonetheless that experience hasn’t dented the certainty of Bendtner, who dreams of a different result this time, and is fully confident his side can prevail.
“The dream scenario is to lead the line and score again against Barcelona,” added Bendtner.
“It is a difficult place to go and Barcelona have not failed to score there … forever, but we have to be compact, press in a good way, have a good balance and then take our chances because Barcelona always score at home.
“It is going well, we are a team and I think that the team will win in Barcelona, not just one player.”