Player Profile – Thierry Henry, A Gunner Forever

Thierry Henry

Position: Striker

Age: 34

Birth Date: Aug 17, 1977   Birth Place: Paris, France

Height: 1.85m (6’1″)          Weight: 83.2 kg (183 lbs)

Thierry Henry has returned to play for the Gunners on loan from the New York Red Bulls of MLS. He will be leaving on February 16th to return to start pre-season training with the Red Bulls.

Henry is first and foremost an icon of French football. He is the career leader in scoring for his country after displacing Michel Platini. He was also a member of the 1998 World Cup winning French side. Henry started in Monaco in the youth ranks under none other than Arsene Wenger, that name sound familiar? Following his play in Monaco at the youth level he was whisked off to Series A to play with Juventus where he played winger under the tutelage of Carlo Ancelotti.

Shortly thereafter, Wenger convinced Arsenal to spend £10.5 million to obtain the rights of Henry. Wenger quickly put Arsenal’s investment to good use and converted Henry into one of the best and most feared forward in all of football. Euro 2000 victory soon came and Henry switched from forward to striker and helped Arsenal win the Double.

Henry scored 226 goals in just 380 game for the Gunners, before his recent return. His play in the last game at Highbury was legendary as he netted three goals. From 2000 to 2005 he dominated the English Premier League. He was feared by all and with good reason. However, when Arsenal moves to Emirates Stadium to start the 2006 season, Henry’s best at Arsenal was behind him. That summer he lost the Champions League final and the World Cup final.

Nevertheless, he re-signed with Arsenal following the season even though Barcelona showed great interest in his talents. The following season he suffered from a number of fitness problems and was eventually sold to Barcelona during the 2007 summer transfer window. His career numbers for Arsenal upon his departure were two EPL titles, two FA Cup titles and player of the year five times.

Henry finally won the Champions League while playing for Barcelona. He played a remarkably prominent role in the Cataluna’s Treble during the 2008-2009 season. However, the following season he was relegated to sitting and watching and embarked on yet another challenge. Only weeks after France’s embarrassing showing at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, Henry signed with the Red Bulls to play in the MLS.

That is where it stands now. Henry has come full circle and returned for a short loan spell of two months to help the Gunners. His presence alone should help morale and give the young players a bit of inspiration, while his experience and poise will stand out as he will lead by example.

Henry throughout his career has been a very talented and all around player. He has no obvious faults. If there is one thing it might be he rarely scores with a header. However, his strengths far a weigh any fault he may have. He has always had an extreme pace, excellent control, deft technique, unflappable composure and creativity no player can rival. He sets up teammates on a regular basis and possesses a strong winner’s mentality with an equally strong character.

His best year at Arsenal was the 2003-2004 campaign when the Gunners went undefeated in league play and he scored 30 goals in his 37 appearances in the league. That season he was named both PFA Footballer and Player’s Player of the Year.

Henry has one child, Tea Henry, with ex-wife Nicole Merry. He was married to Merry from 2003 until their divorce in 2007. He is the founder of the program Stand Up, Speak Up which addresses the problem of racism in football.

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