Dennis Nicolaas Bergkamp ( born 10 May 1969), is a former Dutch professional footballer who is currently the assistant manager to Frank de Boer at Ajax. At club level he played for Ajax, Internazionale, and Arsenal, and also represented the Netherlands at international level. Bergkamp played most of his best games as a support striker at Arsenal, where his tactical awareness and deft passes made him a great exponent of the game from the 'hole'. He was selected by Pele as one of the FIFA 100 greatest living players and is widely regarded as one of the Premier League's greatest players. In 2007 he was inducted into the FIFA Hall of Fame, the first and thus far only Dutch player ever to receive such honour. He has also finished third in the FIFA World Player of the Year award twice.
Others on Bergkamp
In Brilliant Orange (ISBN 0-7475-5310-6), David Winner's analysis of the way in which Dutch football and Dutch culture blend, the sculptor Jeroen Henneman analyzes the effect of Bergkamp's passes and how he can split a defence: "It's a miracle. One moment the pitch is crowded and narrow. Suddenly it is huge and wide."
Bergkamp's close control and skill in passing the ball has put him in very high regard by Arsenal's fans, who have given him nicknames such as "Dennis the Menace", "the Dutch Master", and "Bergy".
Arsène Wenger also said about him after Arsenal's 3–1 win over West Bromwich Albion (16 April 2006) that Bergkamp had: "Intelligence and class. Class is of course, most of the time linked to what you can do with the ball, but the intelligence makes you use the technique in an efficient way. It's like somebody who has a big vocabulary but he doesn't say intelligent words, and somebody who has a big vocabulary but he can talk intelligently, and that's what Dennis is all about. What he does, there's always a head and always a brain. And his technique allows him to do what he sees, and what he decides to do."
Bergkamp's former strike partner Thierry Henry praised the Dutchman after his last game for the club: "Dennis is the best player I have ever played with as a partner. It is a dream for a striker to have him in the team with you."
Arsenal Legend Ian Wright said of Bergkamp: "He's the messiah. We told him to get us into Europe when he joined and that's exactly what he did."
In April 2006, Simon Kuper wrote in the Financial Times: "One night last year some legends of Dutch football gathered for dinner in an Amsterdam house. Around midnight conversation turned to an old question: who was the best Dutch footballer ever? Dutchmen have been voted European Footballer of the Year seven times, more than any other nationality except Germans. Yet Jan Mulder, a great centre-forward turned writer, chose a player who had never even threatened to win the award nor, at the time, a Champions League: 'Bergkamp. He had the finest technique', said Mulder. Guus Hiddink, the great Dutch manager, nodded, and so the matter was settled."
Bergkamp is married to Henrita Ruizendaal, with whom he has had three daughters Estelle Deborah, Yasmin Naomi and Saffron Rita, and a son Mitchel Dennis.
He is also the uncle of Roland Bergkamp, who currently plays for Brighton & Hove Albion F.C. During his time with Arsenal he studied mechanical engineering at The University of Bath. Bergkamp is also best friends with Marc Overmars and Robert Pires, with whom he played at Arsenal.
Bergkamp has the nickname Non-Flying Dutchman due to his fear of flying. This stemmed from an incident with the Dutch national side at the 1994 World Cup where the engine of the plane cut out during flight, which prompted a journalist to joke about having a bomb in his bag. Following this incident Bergkamp decided he'd never fly again suggesting that the anxiety over the flights would significantly affect his performances. This severely limited his ability to play in away matches in European competition and to travel with the Dutch national side. In some cases he would travel overland by car or train, but the logistics of some matches were such that he would not travel at all. In one situation, Arsene Wenger told him not to travel, even though it was logistically possible, because of the exertions involved.
From : www.wikipedia.org