Arsenal legend Thierry Henry has discussed the lessons he learned from Arsene Wenger and Pep Guardiola.

Arsenal all-time leading goalscorer Thierry Henry recently stepped back into the world of coaching, taking on the job of managing the France under-21s team.

This is not Henry’s first foray into management. He has previously been at the helm at Monaco and Montreal Impact. However, he has not held a managerial role since February 2021, prior to his appointment in the French national youth set up.

As a player, Henry worked under some of the greatest coaches in the game. His time with Arsenal was spent under the guidance of Arsene Wenger, who led the north London club through the most successful period in their history. 

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In 2007, Henry left the Emirates Stadium to join Barcelona, where he was a key figure in Pep Guardiola’s all-conquering squad, alongside the likes of Lionel Messi and Samuel Eto’o.

Arsenal v Manchester City - The Emirates FA Cup Semi-Final
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Henry gives credit to Wenger and Guardiola

Henry will now look to apply the lessons he took from watching Wenger work at Arsenal, and Guardiola operate at the Camp Nou, into his own coaching style.

Speaking to French outlet Telefoot, Henry said, “Being a manager is about asking the question: can you make your players more intelligent, understand football a bit better? Let’s use Pep Guardiola as an example. I thought I was good at football but when I arrived there at Barcelona I just thought, ‘Wow, what is he talking about?’”

The Frenchman credits Wenger with giving him a more emotional understanding of the game. He said, “Arsene Wenger, when I arrived to Arsenal, opened up my spirit and my mind as a continuation of what I learned at the academy at Clairefontaine. Pep Guardiola opened my eyes.”

Mikel Arteta, who currently occupies the dugout for the Gunners, also worked with both Wenger and Guardiola. He was a player at Arsenal under the former, and acted as the latter’s assistant manager at Manchester City prior to his appointment at the Emirates Stadium.

Like Henry, Arteta too will have taken lessons from these greats, and Arsenal are reaping the benefits of that now. Henry will be hoping to have a similarly positive impact in his new role with the France under-21s squad. He will certainly be blessed with plenty of exciting talents to work with and nurture.

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