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The Dutchman is one of the most decorated footballers in the history of football.
When Arjen Robben announced his retirement from football, some of the splendid memories he created over the years, flashed through everyone’s minds. One of the best modern day wingers, success and achievements followed Arjen Robben wherever he went.
From a charming young winger to one of the most decorated footballers in the world, Arjen Robben underwent quite the journey. In his 21-year long career, he gathered a huge fan following. Perhaps that is the reason why there is a tinge of sorrow as he has finally decided to call it a day.
The moments of brilliance he produced on the pitch will forever be etched in our memories. Let us recollect some of the unique achievements of Arjen Robben during his prolonged career.
5. Premier League title win (2004-05)
For a 20-year-old, joining a Premier League club of Chelsea’s stature was in itself a huge achievement. However, Robben did not only settle at that. In his very first season with the Blues, he got onto the scoresheet nine times in all competitions. Chelsea won the league title that season and followed it with another in the next.
It was during this time when the fans got the first glance at Arjen Robben’s talent. He found a place in the PFA Premier League Team of the Year for his sumptuous display.
4. Bundesliga title win (2009-10)
When Arjen Robben joined Bayern Munich in 2009, he was at the peak of his career. The Dutchman won them the league title in his debut season itself, having scored 23 times in 37 overall appearances.
That season, he was adjudged Bundesliga Player of the Season as well as Footballer of the Year (Germany). His brilliance did not stop there as Robben led Bayern Munich to establish supremacy in the Bundesliga for almost the entirety of the following decade.
3. FIFA World Cup 2010 runners-up finish
Besides his heroics at the Allianz Arena, Arjen Robben continued his magnificence on the pitch with The Netherlands as well. In the 2010 FIFA World Cup, he was one of the most integral players for manager Dick Advocaat’s starting XI.
His goal against Uruguay in the semifinal turned out to be the difference-maker as the Netherlands progressed to the final. Unfortunately, Spain took the trophy home, thanks to Andres Iniesta’s winner in the added extra time.
Nevertheless, that performance certainly earned Arjen Robben a lot of plaudits. Interestingly, he scored a brace in their 5-1 mauling of La Roja in the 2014 FIFA World Cup. He was once again in fine form for the Dutchmen as they secured a third-place finish in that edition.
2. Dutch Sportsman of the Year (2014)
2014 turned out to be glamorous year for Arjen Robben. He won several accolades – individual as well as with his teams. That remarkably included the Bundesliga title win, DFB Pokal and a third-place finish at the FIFA World Cup.
Apart from that, he was also named in the European Sports Media Team of the Year, the UEFA Team of the Year, UEFA Champions League Team of the Season as well as the FIFA World Cup All Star Team. Perhaps even more notable was his fourth-place finish in the race for the prestigious Ballon d’Or.
But his most important achievement of 2014 was winning the Dutch Sportsman of the Year award. Nothing better than being recognised as the best sportsman in one’s own country!
1. UEFA Champions League win (2012-13)
Prior to a memorable 2014, Arjen Robben won one of the major trophies in his career – the UEFA Champions League. Bayern Munich were one of the early contenders for the title and they lived upto their expectations that season.
Overcoming the likes of Valencia, Arsenal and Juventus, the Bavarians were simply unstoppable. Against Barcelona in the semifinal, Arjen Robben stepped up and scored in both legs to guide his side to an unprecedented final.
It was a perfect setup for German football fans as Borussia Dortmund had defeated Real Madrid to book a ticket to the Wembley. The final turned out to be an evenly matched game until Robben broke thousands of hearts with a last-gasp winner.
The winger was in the form of his life and he delivered in one of the most crucial moments for his side. That is what makes the win one of the best achievements in Arjen Robben’s professional career.