Nicklas Bendtner is only focused on Sunderland

Sunderland's Nicklas Bendtner.
Sunderland's Nicklas Bendtner.
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NICKLAS Bendtner wants to shelve all talk of his future while he concentrates on trying to fire Sunderland to cup glory and league success.

In little more than six weeks, the Arsenal striker completes a season-long loan at the Stadium of Light.

What happens after that is uncertain. He will leave the Gunners and has expressed an interest in playing Champions League football, while Sunderland are unable to pay the wages the Danish striker commands.

But the 24-year-old insists that he is only interested in the present at Sunderland, rather than what the close season might hold for him elsewhere.

“It’s not as easy as me deciding what I want to do because I’ve got two years left at Arsenal and I don’t know what will happen after the summer,” he said.

“I am here at the club right now and we have a good team, a good manager and a good staff.

“It could end on a real high, with us just being a game away from Wembley.

“It would be great if we can keep going until the end of the season and finish everything off on a high.”

Bendtner has scored three goals in his last five games to suggest that it is not only Sunderland that could be ready to finish the campaign with a flourish.

But the Dane says his job is not being made any easier by the mask he wears to protect an eye socket broken back in January.

“I can see with the mask on but sometimes I give the ball away because you’re trying to see a run but your eye disappears into the mask,” he said.

“It’s difficult and heading the ball is not great either.

“My goal against QPR at the weekend was the first header on target I’ve had wearing the mask and the good thing was that it didn’t hurt. In fact it was all right.

“I will probably wear the mask against Everton tonight and probably take it off for Saturday, although I might still keep it on for that game too.”

Bendtner’s caution is understandable given the fact that any damage to the original injury could be career-threatening but he has managed to cope effectively with the disadvantage, much to the delight of his manager.

“Nicklas has done very well in the last few games,” said Martin O’Neill.

“He was brave enough to step up and take the penalty at Newcastle and he scored. He’s then backed that up with a couple of goals in his last few games as well against Liverpool and QPR, and he’s been a very influential player for us.

“I’m very pleased with the way he’s been playing.”