OUTSPOKEN Nicklas Bendtner won’t cause any ripples in the Sunderland dressing room if he does his talking on the pitch.
That’s the view of Sunderland defender John O’Shea, no stranger to larger than life characters from his decade of service at Manchester United.
Bendtner, expected to make his Black Cats bow in tomorrow’s encounter with Chelsea, arrives on Wearside with a reputation for singing his own praises after famously claiming he was “one of the best strikers in the world” while at Arsenal.
But O’Shea has shrugged off any fears over the Danish striker’s personality, insisting there won’t be an issue if the 23-year-old can improve Sunderland’s meagre return of a solitary goal from the opening four games of the season.
The Republic of Ireland international told the Echo: “You get characters like this in football, who aren’t short of confidence.
“If Nicklas shows his stuff on the pitch, no-one will care what type of comments he comes out with.
“If he’s scoring goals and helping the team win games, that’s all we’re worried about.
“I’ve seen him up close and personal after playing against Arsenal many times and he’ll be a major asset to Sunderland.”
O’Shea was tasked with keeping Bendtner under wraps when the pair were locked in the scrap for the title at Man United and Arsenal respectively.
The 30-year-old believes Bendtner has all the attributes needed to be a success on Wearside during his season-long loan, but must ensure he finds some consistency.
O’Shea added: “Without a doubt he’ll help us. He’s coming in after two goals for Denmark.
“After coming from Arsenal, he’s got a point to prove that the ability he’s shown in glimpses, he can produce that consistently and become a major player in the Premiership.
“If he can do that week-in, week-out, he’ll become a big player for Sunderland and a huge asset to us.
“He’s got that big physical element and that aerial ability, but he’s very good with his feet too, scoring goals with his left and right foot.
“There’s an all-round package with him really.
“If we can get him full of confidence with goals and carry on the form he showed with Denmark, it’ll be a great start to his Sunderland career.”