Glenn Helder

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Glenn Helder
Personal information
Full name Glenn Helder
Date of birth (1968-10-28) 28 October 1968 (age 47)
Place of birth Leiden, Netherlands
Height 1.74 m (5 ft 8 12 in)
Playing position Winger
Youth career
Oranje Groen
Ajax Amsterdam
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1989–1993 Sparta Rotterdam 93 (9)
1993–1995 Vitesse Arnhem 52 (12)
1995–1997 Arsenal 39 (1)
1996 Benfica (loan) 11 (1)
1997–1998 NAC Breda 3 (0)
1998 Dalian Wanda FC ? (?)
1998–1999 NAC Breda 3 (0)
1999–2000 MTK Hungária FC 9 (1)
2000–2002 RBC Roosendaal 0 (0)
2002–2003 TOP Oss 10 (1)
2009-2010 DOTO 3 (0)
National team
1995 Netherlands 4 (0)

* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.

Glenn Helder (born 28 October 1968 in Leiden) is a former Dutch footballer. He was a product of Ajax Amsterdam's youth system, though to get first team football he moved to Sparta Rotterdam in 1989 where he played 93 games, scoring nine goals. In 1993 he moved to Vitesse Arnhem where he played 52 games, scoring 12 goals and attracting the interest of English club Arsenal.


Helder joined Arsenal on 14 February 1995 and made his debut in a 1–0 home win against Nottingham Forest on 21 February. He was the final signing made by George Graham, who left a week after his arrival. Helder was with Arsenal until October 1997, and his time there was comparatively disappointing—he made 27 league appearances plus 12 as a substitute, scoring one goal (which came in a 3–2 win over Middlesbrough FC).[1] In late 1996, just after the appointment of Arsene Wenger as manager, Arsenal sent him on loan to Benfica where he sustained a serious injury. Returning to the club, he found that he had been replaced by Marc Overmars in the summer of 1997 and was unable to break back into the first team.

After leaving Arsenal, Helder's career was somewhat eclectic; he moved to NAC Breda in his native Netherlands; after a short spell there he went to play in China for Dalian Wanda FC, but returned to Breda quite soon afterwards. He did not stay long in his second spell at Breda before moving on to MTK Hungária FC in Hungary. He soon returned home to have a trial with FC Dordrecht, who did not give him a contract, and he eventually signed for RBC Roosendaal, and ended his career at TOP Oss. He also earned four caps for the Netherlands national football team in 1995.

After his professional career he played for Dutch amateur clubs Neptunus (2003/04) SHO (2004/05) and Bergen (2005/06).

In an interview in 1999 he stated that during his stay at NAC he tried to commit suicide because of problems resulting from compulsive gambling.[2] However, he continues to gamble, and is sometimes seen playing poker on the British Five television station, representing the Netherlands.[3] He also represents Arsenal in Masters Football tournaments.

In July 2006, Helder made a surprise appearance for Arsenal in Dennis Bergkamp's final ever game, a testimonial against Ajax.

Personal life[edit]

Helder was imprisoned in September 2007, on account of threatening his ex-girlfriend and physically abusing her current partner. In March 2008, Helder accepted to be treated at De Waag, an institute for ambulant forensic psychiatry in Haarlem, in order to convince his judge that chances of relapse need not be feared. The judge still has to decide if Helder will need to enter treatment. Earlier psychological investigation concluded that Helder suffers from "a Narcissistic personality disorder with hints of borderline". Helder himself disagrees with this conclusion.


  1. ^ Benkley, Stephen (13 January 1996). "Helder holds court". London: The Independent. Retrieved 10 February 2010. 
  2. ^ Kuper, Simon (30 May 1999). "Helder gambled with his life". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 3 May 2010. 
  3. ^ Glenn Helder: Hendon Mob Poker Database