David Bentley retires from football

David Bentley, the former Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur player has retired from professional football at the age of 29, after claiming to have fallen out of love with the game.

The Englishman played for seven different games during his career as a professional – Arsenal and their North London rivals Spurs, Norwich City, West Ham United as well as a stint with FC Rostov. But he spent arguably the most successful spell of his career with Blackburn Rovers, becoming the first ever player in Premier League history to score a hat-trick against Manchester United in a thrilling 4-3 victory over Sir Alex Ferguson’s side.

During his spell with Rovers, Bentley was tipped as arguably the most talented youngster in the English game and a natural heir on the right wing for the England national side, but critics say he never really lived up to fulfill his massive potential as a footballer.

Having played only one first team game for Arsenal where he was a youth team product, he was constantly loaned out and spent a few months with Norwich City, playing 26 matches for the Canaries and scoring two goals for them.

His form at Rovers prompted Spurs to bring him to White Hart Lane but he never really made his mark in the team and the emergence of Aaron Lennon ended his time at the club and he was moved on.

Bentley played 107 matches for Blackburn Rovers while with Spurs, where he moved for a massive £ 15 million fee, and made just 42 appearances for the club, scoring two goals. He left the club on a free transfer twelve months ago and did not have a club since then and his retirement from football comes with many critics citing his off field antics as one reason for his unfulfilled potential.