Dennis Bergkamp, known for his remarkable career at both Arsenal and Ajax, has declared his intention to make a comeback in football coaching, reigniting his passion for nurturing young talent, as a bank note featuring his goal for the Netherlands against Argentina is revealed.

Dennis Bergkamp's statue outside the Emirates Stadium
Dennis Bergkamp’s statue outside the Emirates Stadium

Dennis Bergkamp, the Arsenal football legend, has expressed his eagerness to return to coaching, five years after his departure from Ajax.

In an exclusive interview with De Telegraaf, Bergkamp revealed his renewed passion for working with top talents, stating, “It’s itching again.”

His former coach at Arsenal, Arsène Wenger, has lauded the prospect of Bergkamp’s return to coaching, hailing it as a boon for football.

Wenger highlighted Bergkamp’s extensive knowledge and experience, placing him among the greats of the sport, second only to Johan Cruijff.

“I think that’s the most beautiful thing [to coach young talent],” Bergkamp said. “The bridging function at Ajax from youth in training to the first team was therefore the best fit.

“But that was also how I played, between the lines. I was not a midfielder, not an attacker. I thought that was a great position at Ajax. I saw the talents coming, had consultations with the youth trainers, with the head of training and I also had a voice towards the head coach.

“Because that’s what you want, that you command respect and that people listen when you say that a player is coming from the youth and that they don’t just continue with another, older player.

“If I return to football and I think this will happen, that is one of my main ambitions. Because I think I’m good at that…”

This month, Bergkamp’s significant contribution to football is being celebrated with a unique honour – a unique, gold €8 banknote featuring him.

dennis bergkamp noteThis tribute by the Royal Joh. Enschede commemorates Bergkamp’s legendary goal during the 1998 World Cup quarter-final between the Netherlands and Argentina.

This is the first time a Dutch sports icon has been featured on such a banknote.

Bergkamp, known for his reticence in the media, broke his silence to share his insights on talent development and his views on the current situation at Ajax, more than a decade after his own transformative period at the club.

He spoke of his deep connection with Johan Cruijff and apparently expressed regret about certain aspects of his time under Wenger at Arsenal, although I was unable to locate any actual quotes about this on the De Telegraaf site, even though they referenced them.

The interview also touched on the enduring impact of Bergkamp’s most celebrated goal, scored against Argentina – a moment that continues to resonate with him deeply.

Further, Bergkamp’s insights on the Dutch approach to football training, renowned globally, were highlighted. He mentioned how even Thierry Henry, his former teammate at Arsenal, recently reminisced about the Ajax training methods.

Bergkamp’s potential return to football in a coaching role, focusing on youth development, marks an exciting prospect for the sport.

His profound understanding and experience in football make him an invaluable asset in nurturing the next generation of football talent.

As Bergkamp contemplates his future in football coaching, his vision and approach could significantly impact the development of young players and the broader football landscape.