Former Arsenal striker Nicklas Bendtner has revealed that his struggles with a poker addiction at the beginning of his career cost him over £5m.
Bendtner is currently without a club, having left FC Copenhagen in December, but features in his own reality TV show in his native Denmark
The 32-year-old and his girlfriend, model Philine Roepstorff, star in the aptly named show ‘Bendtner and Philine’.
During a recent episode, the former Arsenal and Sunderland man admitted to battling a costly gambling problem as a teenager, losing millions to Texas Hold ‘Em.
As quoted by AS, Bendtner said: “I lost a lot of money, an unrealistic amount. “It’s hard to say how much it was in reality, but I’d estimate that it was almost 50 million Korona (around £5.4m).
“It was something that I was always in control of and I simply bet big sums of money. Sometimes in London, things would get out of control on a night and things could really have ended badly.
“Now I place smaller bets of 100 Korona (approximately £12).”
Bendtner would have been at Arsenal at the time, having finished off his youth career in the Gunners academy, making his first team debut in 2005 as a 17-year-old.
He spent 10 years at Arsenal, which included loan spells to Birmingham, Sunderland and Juventus, before moving to Wolfsburg in 2014.
Bendtner has also racked up 81 caps for his country, featuring at four major tournaments for Denmark.
This includes Euro 2012, where he was slapped with a one match ban and £80,000 fine by Uefa for pulling down his shorts to reveal the logo of betting company Paddy Power.
The forward and his partner’s reality show was first announced at the end of January.
Speaking about his TV show [via Goal], Bendtner said: “We were well aware that it wouldn’t become a glossy tale with us as protagonists. But, we’ve never been interested in that either.”