By Nicholas Veevers
Dennis Bergkamp has become the latest international star to send his best wishes for FA150.
The Dutch legend spent 11 years playing in England with Arsenal, where he won an impressive three Premier League titles and four FA Cup medals.
His performances for the Gunners and the Netherlands, along with his stunning goals saw him become a firm favourite with football fans across the world.
And Bergkamp wished a happy 150th birthday to The FA through an exclusive interview with FATV at the Amsterdam ArenA.
He said: “It’s fantastic of course. It’s a long time and for me personally, as a foreigner coming to England, I’ve always enjoyed playing in England and The FA played a big part in that in making everyone happy and getting things organised.
“I always had it in mind to play in England one day, just to experience the game, the excitement and the fans, up close and on the pitch with the fantastic pitches and atmosphere.
“I moved first to Italy as that was, in my opinion, the way to do it and then sooner than expected I went to England to play there and it was always an ambition of mine to go there.
“It fulfilled everything that I expected of playing there and was as good as I expected it to be, maybe even better.
“Winning trophies and having a fantastic time made me stay every year and continue for 11 years in England and it was a good time.”
Bergkamp has plenty of personal memories from his time in England, who could forget his incredible hat-trick against Leicester City in 1997 or his strike at Newcastle United in 2002?
But there’s still one game he recalls which epitomised the spirit of English football that he enjoyed more than most.
“I think what English football has is that teams never give up, even if they’re two or 3-0 down,” he added.
“I remember a few games, but for me personally it was against Middlesbrough at Highbury which we won 5-3 in the end.
“But we were behind as well and just experiencing that feeling, that we’re not going to give up.
“The fans got behind us, we scored a goal and got closer and then in the end we won the game.
“So that was typical of English football.”
Watch the full and exclusive interview with Dennis in the Media Gallery above, where he speaks about his football dreams as a boy, his current role as Assistant Coach at Ajax and who the best English player he came up against was.
By Nicholas Veevers