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By Tom Sanders
TalkSPORT host Adrian Durham found himself in hot water this week after being branded a 'disgrace' by Arsenal legends for criticizing Dennis Bergkamp.
During a discussion of the best Dutchmen to play in the Premier League, Durham repeatedly downplayed Bergkamp's achievements and doubled-down when challenged on his comments.
"If [Bergkamp] was that good, why didn't he win the Premier League? Why didn't he win back-to-back Premier League titles? He never scored 20 goals in a season for Arsenal, and he was there for over 10 years. That's not good!" Durham claimed, oblivious to the dumbfounded looks his co-hosts and most of his listeners were giving him.
"If Bergkamp was so good, why didn't #AFC win the Champions League or back-to-back titles?"- talkSPORT (@talkSPORT) November 1, 2019
"Never scored more than 20 goals in a Premier League season... he was there for 10 years!.":x:@talkSPORTDrive fires back at Martin Keown in style on the Bergkamp debate:fire: pic.twitter.com/1BV04HpwV1
Durham's comments provoked a furious response from both fans and players alike, with several of Bergkamp's former teammates jumping to his aid.
Ray Parlour was the first to jump to the Dutchman's defence, stating that: "Dennis was such a great player, he'll probably go down - or be very close to - Arsenal's best ever player.
"He was a genius, I was lucky to play alongside him in the same teams.
"He was such an intelligent player, he would always get in the right place at the right time, he'd always make the right decision at the right time."
Next up was Bergkamp's teammate and Arsenal legend Martin Keown, who added that: "If you spoke to all of these individuals they'd have to say Bergkamp has to be in there.
"He was an absolute football God, a genius on the football pitch, it was like watching a ballerina with the balance that he had...
"I just feel that Adrian Durham, he clearly doesn't know anything about football.
"If you don't pick him in the top five - have you renewed his contract? Because that's ridiculous.
"If you've got a footballing opinion and want to take some sense, then don't wind us up by telling us that.
"It's a disgrace, on behalf of the Bergkamp family I have to argue that Bergkamp was definitely in the top five of Dutch players that have come to this country.
"He has to [apologise] because it doesn't stack up."
And if that wasn't enough, now Cesc Fabregas has waded into the debate, tweeting his disdain at Durham's comments.
"Is this guy serious? Lost the plot big time there. If you don't think Bergkamp was that good, then you don't understand this sport at all." He said.
Is this guy serious? Lost the plot big time there. If you don't think Bergkamp was that good, then you don't understand this sport at all. https://t.co/6YrXiX2vnn- Cesc Fàbregas Soler (@cesc4official) November 4, 2019
We all know that the TalkSPORT lot can be a bunch of wind-up merchants, but surely this goes beyond the pale. If Adrian Durham was a politician he'd be asked to resign for his comments, and he's lucky to escape with just a verbal beatdown here.
In the meantime, let's all enjoy watching that Newcastle goal again and think of better times.
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