• Premier League

Bendtner confident he earns his pay

ESPN staff
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Nicklas Bendtner believes the sacrifices he makes - like skiing - ensure Arsenal pay him what he deserves © PA Photos
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Arsenal striker Nicklas Bendtner believes he is worth every penny of his weekly wages because of the sacrifices he has to make in order to play football.

Bendtner - who last week was revealed to have 'off-the-scale' self-confidence - is adamant that he earns his weekly wages, believed to be in the region of £50,000, because of the commitment it takes to be a Premier League footballer and the attention that comes with it.

"There is a price to pay as well for us players. Personally, I think I pay a big price with my body, my time and with never being able to have privacy when I am out and around other people," Bendtner said. "I am not complaining. It's a natural part of being a professional football but it is definitely a price to pay when, for example, you can't go out to eat in a restaurant with your girlfriend without photographers chasing you.

"The biggest thing I miss because of football is that I really, really love to go on a skiing holiday but as long as I have my career, I can't do that because of the risk of being injured.

"That is one thing that has been taken away from me by football that other young people can do. They have the freedom to decide how to spend their time."

However, the Denmark international admits he would not be prepared to give up his current lifestyle in order to change careers.

"I would lie if I said that I didn't enjoy the money I earn in football," he said. "It's always fair to ask whether players are worth the incredible amounts of money we earn and ask whether we earn too much. Somehow I believe that we must be worth our salaries because that is how the mechanism of society works.

"As long as I work as hard as I can, I believe I am worth what is coming my way."

Despite his lucrative earnings, Bendtner is disappointed with the lack of games he has played this season under Arsene Wenger. The 23-year-old has started just one Premier League match to date, and conceded that he will consider his future at the end of the season if he does not get more opportunities to play.

"I am happy to be an Arsenal player but, of course, I must play more," he said. "I mean that I am good enough to be in the line-up. I will play this season to the end as an Arsenal player and then make a decision on my status in the summer."

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