The Mancunion

Britain's biggest student newspaper

The Legend of Thierry Henry

Thierry Henry is one of the greatest footballers the world has seen, so we take a brief look at his history

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The legendary Thierry Henry has forged his respectable name primarily at the Emirates Stadium in North London, where he spent eight precious years as a proud Gunner. During his entire career as an exceptional footballer, Thierry has earned countless trophies and personal titles, creating a long astonishing list which most players can only dream of.

In regards to his beloved club, Arsenal have earned a special spot in history by the end of the 2003-04 season. They won the Premier League trophy, which Henry clinched twice during the English portion of his timeline, in a very rare pattern. They strolled around the nation without a single defeat, a journey in which Thierry missed only one league match.

As an ongoing recognition, their remarkable squad from that period have been honourably named as ‘The Invincibles’. During that unforgettable year, the spectacular forwarder also achieved a club record of having the most goals scored in a Premier League season (30) — a figure which the Dutch Robin van Persie equalled during Arsenal’s 2011-12 season.

Thierry Henry also adored playing for FC Barcelona, a transfer which was granted by The Gunners. During his phase at Catalonia, he was playing the beautiful game alongside many other legends formed under a mighty emblem.

The attacking force of Barça during that era was unbelievable, as it consisted of Henry, Samuel Eto’o, Ronaldinho and Lionel Messi. Within their midfield, Andrés Iniesta and Xavi Hernández were mastering the playmaking role, feeding the front with utter precision.

Majestically, the captain who led this magical team was the Spanish Tarzan Carlos Puyol, who was unquestionably a paragon of defence.

As a youngster, Thierry started his professional career in AS Monaco FC, making his debut under Arsène Wenger. Le Professeur managed ASM from 1987 till 1994, during which he discovered Titi (a nickname that most of the player’s admirers fancy calling him by) within their phenomenal youth system.

As a previous member of Les Bleus, he left a memorable mark in the French history books. In personal terms, he became France’s all-time leading goalscorer with 51 goals, a record which still remains intact.

As a squad, the most valuable international trophy he helped to achieve is unanimously agreed on to be the FIFA World Cup in 1998, a marvellous victory that will ever be remembered by the French citizens.

As an ending to his tremendous career, he travelled to another continent in the far west to sign a multi-year contract with the New York Red Bulls. Impressively, Henry led his American team towards winning their first ever trophy in the franchise’s history, which spent seventeen years in the making.

For his last triumph, he boosted the New Yorkers into receiving the MLS Supporters’ Shield in 2013, a grand reward given to the team with the best record in the regular season. As a final token, he left the MLS by leaving another club record behind him, as he became the Red Bulls’ all-time top assister with 42 assists.

After hanging his boots up, Henry remained within the sport’s realm. For a while now, he has been working brilliantly as a television pundit for Sky Sports, a job in which he has long proven to be beyond competent to thrive in. His vast knowledge about the sport, and the characters within it, make him an invaluable gem for this industry.

To progress further, Henry has been learning and practising in deepening his coaching capabilities in order to receive the necessary badges to hopefully manage a professional team one day.

Quite recently, he has been officially welcomed to the Belgian national team’s staff as an assistant coach under the Spaniard Roberto Martinez, which is definitely a profound step towards management.

Dennis Bergkamp, an outstanding Dutch retiree who formed an attacking front alongside Henry during The Invincibles’ historical season, mentioned the Frenchman admirably. He said, “if you look at the whole package, with everything Henry has, I don’t think you can find that anywhere else”.

Well, we can only await for a validation and see if a firing phoenix will ever arise from Thierry Henry’s ashes.