EVERYONE is queueing up to pay tribute to Thierry Henry, who announced his retirement from football today.
In his time at Arsenal alone, his stats were preposterously great. For the Gunners, he bagged a whopping 175 Premier League goals, and during his time there, he found the back of the net every 122 minutes. He also landed two Premier League titles, three FA Cups and two Community Shields, was part of the Invicibles, won four Golden Boots, hit 226 goals in all competitions, chipped in with over a century of assists and everyone kinda fancied him.
Not bad for a player who Arsene Wenger signed as a winger.
If you include the rest of his career, where he played for Monaco, Barcelona, Juventus and New York Red Bulls, Thierry managed to score 360 club goals in 792 games and bagged 51 goals in 123 matches for France.
His colleagues have been quick to tip praise all over him. Cesc Fabregas tweeted: “Sad to see the end to the career of one of the best players I’ve ever played with. A true legend.” Mesut Ozil said: “Once you enchanted all of us – now I can only say: Thanks for everything!”
Jamie Carragher added: “Defenders everywhere will be breathing a sigh of relief that he has hung his boots up. He was certainly the toughest opponent I ever faced and possibly the best player the Premier League has seen. I would have loved him to be on the same team as me during my playing career.”
With all that taken into account, let us look at some of the best (and worst) of Thierry Henry’s career!
Henry’s Finest Moment
For everything Henry has done, he’ll never top this photo of himself with a boombox.
Volley versus Manchester United
Possibly Henry’s most famous goal. Certainly one of the best goals ever scored on English soil.
Henry’s hat-trick against Liverpool
Henry could pretty much do everything, but his second goal in his famous hat-trick against Liverpool takes some beating.
Henry sees red
Thierry was no wimp and could throw himself around if needed. In the World Cup in 2002, he was Sent off for a late tackle against Uruguay during France’s disappointing tournament.
Henry wasn’t too shabby at Barcelona, winning the Champion’s League with them. His goal against Celtic is one of his best in the famous shirt.
When in the USofA, Thierry didn’t stop being brilliant and getting fans out of their seats. He scored a number of great goals, but our favourite is his effort against FC Dallas.
The Hand of Frog
Henry’s handball against Ireland in the World Cup play-off saw France on the plane to South Africa. The Irish were heartbroken and the thing that hurt most was the fact it was one of the most loved players on the planet who cheated an underdog out of the game.
How much do Arsenal love Titi? So much so, that they unveiled a bronze statue of him outside the Emirates Stadium. Weeks later, Henry returned to play for The Gunners during their 125th anniversary celebrations for a couple of months.
The King of Madrid
Trying to win at Real Madrid is difficult enough, but Henry popped up to score an inspired winner for a famous Arsenal victory in Spain!
The Comeback Goal
When Henry returned to Arsenal, he knew how to make a proper comeback. Getting behind the Leeds’ defence, he smoothly knocked the ball into the back of the net and the Gooners went properly wild. Magical moment.
Va Va Voom
Most footballers do advertisements that make you want to die. Not Thierry Henry. He suavely said “Hey! Bobby! What’s the French for Va Va Voom!” and played jazz drums with Animal from The Muppets. Brilliant.
Arsenal fans calling for Arsene Wenger’s head. The naysayers who want Wenger out. The doom merchants and plastic fans who crave only success and weep and wail when they don’t get it. Piers Morgan.
This is not for you.
For all true Gooners who know that pain is part of the journey towards elation, cop a load of this refulgent strike by the wonderful Aaron Ramsey.
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is not going to be sacked, and certainly not dismissed mid-season. Any sane Arsenal supporter with half a memory should concede that Wenger’s Arsenal are a big improvement on much of what went before. The level of expectation should tell them that.
Alexis Sanchez, Arsenal’s tireless Chilean, is talking to The Times’ Rory Smith. Sanchez is tough. The old story about foreigners not liking it up them is bunkum.
On the Christmas truck:
“I would run after them with all the other kids. It was people from the council on the truck. They would throw caramellos, sweets, and games. I always wished they would throw a football. That was what I wanted. I said to myself when I was young that one day, if I ever had the chance, I would do the same, but instead of sweets, I would throw footballs.”
And he does. When he returns to his native Tocopilla, he tosses out sweets and many footballs.
“In my head, I do not feel like a famous person. I am just normal, no different to someone in the street. I am just a kid who happens to play football. Maybe one day that will change, I will mature [into something else], but at the moment that is what I am, who I am, and I like it. When I play, I don’t think about how much I cost. I just try to enjoy myself like it is the first match I ever played.”
“When I was younger, I played football on the streets, on a scrap of land, wherever I could. I had to apologise to the neighbours a few times for breaking windows, like all kids. Quite a few times, actually. We did not have a pitch or goalposts or anything like that. We would put down two rocks and that was the goal. There was just the ground and the ball. It did not bother me not to have proper boots or a good pitch. It was enough to be with my friends and to be playing. It is no different now. I do not mind where I play. I just love playing…”
Read it all.
Transfer Balls: Arsenal Get Chelsea Reject Reus, Who Agreed To Join Barcelona, Manchester United And Real Madrid
The Daily Express says Mrco Reus is heading to the Premier League. He’s coming to Liverpool. No, Arsenal. No, wait, Manchester United. He’s not going to Real Madrid.
Real Madrid have no first refusal option over Marco Reus, leaving the door wide open for the Borussia Dortmund midfielder to move to the Premier League.
Odd. Because the Express has previously told readers that…
Reus is off to Real Madrid. Arsenal and Manchester United can forget it…
Reus is off to Barcelona. Manchester United have lost out…
Reus is staying at Dortmund. Arsenal, Manchester United and Liverpool are crushed…
But Chelsea were delighted…
Reus was then snubbed by Chelsea…
And then on December 1, the Express said the Chelsea move was on…
Arsenal, Man Utd, Liverpool and Chelsea have been handed a timely boost in their pursuit of Borussia Dortmund’s Marco Reus.
And Manchester United are going to buy Reus in the summer…
Such are the fact in the Daily Express…
Arsenal Balls: The Daily Express’ football reporting is laughably poor. Arsenal manager Arsenal Wenger said he hoped to make Arsenal Premier League contenders. Wenger has a new three-year contract.
Sky Sports listens and says: Wenger wants Arsenal to compete for the title.
The Telegraph says: Wenger said Arsenal will win the title inside tree years.
But the pick of the balls is with the Express, which says: Two years to win the league.
More talking balls every day…
Transfer Balls: The Sunday Times says Arsenal are ready to invest £15m raid on Newcastle’s Sissoko.
French midfielder’s defensive drive appeals to Wenger as he searches for sturdy cover in Jack Wilshere’s absence
Sturdy cover for “sturdy” Jack Wilshere? When you think of Wilshere, sturdy is not a word that springs to mind. But is Sissoko coming to the Emirates?
[In 2013] The club said Sissoko had signed a six-and-a-half year contract. However, that was contradicted in the summer when his agent Frederic Guerra claimed Sissoko had only 18 months left on his deal at St James’ Park.
Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere is injured. He was clobbered by Manchester United’s Paddy McNair.
No foul was given.
The Manchester Evening News made not single mention of the foul that ended Wilshere’s match.
The London Evening Standard says Wilshere was “left in a heap” by McNair’s foul.
The clubs’ local newspapers are reporting to the converted.
As Arsenal fans bemoan the referee, the MEN massages its match report and McNair makes a name for himself, Wilshere recovers from surgery to his badly injured ligaments.
The Sun has news:
‘The Arsenal and England midfielder is determined to remain upbeat following the latest ankle operation which will sideline him for three months
The Mail has worse news:
Arsenal face an injury crisis with Jack Wilshere set to miss four months after ankle surgery yesterday
Such are the facts…
Liverpool FC’s local newspaper the Liverpool Echo speaks truth to power with the story that the club are doing great.
Liverpool FC may be struggling – but the stats show Arsenal and Manchester United are faring worse!
This is the current Premier League table.
It will be interesting to see how the Liverpool Echo looks at that table and concludes that Liverpool are above Manchester United and Arsenal.
Liverpool FC may be having a difficult season so far, but Manchester United and Arsenal are doing worse, statistics suggest.
FC BARCELONA have been the modern equivalent of The Beatles, with just about everyone heaping praise on them, apart from sneering hipsters who don’t like anything successful, so they heap praise on Borussia Dortmund instead.
One of the happiest marriages was that between the Camp Nou outfit and Lionel Messi.
However, it looks like all is not rosy in Barcelona as the the Argentine megastar has suggested that his future lies elsewhere because, in his own words, “a lot changes in football.”
WHEN Brian Clough turned Nottingham Forest into European Cup winners, among other things, he could do no wrong. However, with loyalty can come a price.
Brian Clough stayed in Nottingham too long, going from all conquering and refreshingly out-spoken, to a manager out-of-step with football’s changes, eventually seeing Forest relegated.
And so to Arsene Wenger, who himself has done outstanding things with Arsenal, winning all manner of trophies and, of course, creating The Invincibles – one of the greatest teams to ever play in English football. He also revolutionised the way football clubs ran their teams, turning a hard-drinking Arsenal team into a squad of sophisticated footballing gurus.
Pressure builds on Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger.
Matt Hughes tells Times readers that the Arsenal manger should go.
The time has come for Arsenal to take the kind of risk their manager seems so incapable of. It would definitely be a gamble, could prove divisive and may even be unfair, but Arsène Wenger should be thanked for his work and asked to leave the Emirates Stadium at the end of the season.
Klopp Balls: Dortmund Manager Wants Arsenal Job, Get Liverpool Job And Waits For Manchester United Job
The Daily Express has been planning Jurgen Klopp’s future. Apparently, the German manager of Boruisia Dortmund is desperate to work in England. The Express says Klopp is to manage Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester United.
September 5: “Man Utd News: Klopp to succeed Van Gaal”
Novermber 10: “WENGER OUT! The FIVE contenders to replace Arsene at Arsenal (with Klopp top target)”
November 21: “Let’s talk! Jurgen Klopp issues come-and-get-me plea to Arsenal”
All media is runnign with the story that foerm Spurs footballer Paul Gascoigne had his hospital treament paid by Arsenal.
Says Gazza in the Sun:
“I rang up their [Arsenal] physio Gary Lewin and told him I wasn’t feeling great. He said to go to hospital as he feared it was pneumonia. Wenger then agreed to arrange £28,000 to pay for treatment. Arsenal also paid £22,000 when I had hip treatment.”
Transfer Balls: A look at rumour being presented as fact. Today we ask: are Chelsea selling Petr Cech? Are Arsenal buying Petr Chech?
Daily Mail, Nov 21: “Arsenal lead chase for Petr Cech with Chelsea keeper available for just £7m…”
Arsenal get Cech!
Daily Express, Nov 21: “EXCLUSIVE: AC Milan steal lead over Arsenal in race for Chelsea legend Petr Cech”
Ac Milan get Cech!
LAST season Arsenal footballers Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain looked like Kieran Gibbs.
Gibbs was sent off for The Ox’s handball (which wasn’t even a sending-off offence).
Last night, Oxlade-Chamberlain was pretending to be Manchester United’s Wayne Rooney. ITV’s Clive Tyldesley commentates:
TEN years ago, Manchester United and Arsenal indulged in one of football’s daftest climaxes. The feud between the two teams culminated in someone throwing pizza. Apart from the tragic waste of pizza (in what is now officially America’s ‘National Pizza Week’), everyone laughed apart from those involved.
This week, it transpires that Cesc Fabregas could well be the main culprit for slinging pizza at Sir Alex Ferguson. Or at least, that’s the story according to Martin Keown when talking about the Battle of the Buffet.
“As I said on the radio a few years ago, from what I understand it was a Spanish fella with great technique,” says Keown. “Even when it came to the pizza he had great technique. He threw it like a Frisbee.”
Play With A Legend: Hire An Arsenal ‘Legend’ And His Spurs Mates For Your Stag Do, Birthday Or Bar Mitzvah
AT number one is Perry Goves… At number two is Stever The Plumber… At number 3 is Matt ‘The Talc’… At number four is. your girlfriend’s brother who you can’t stand but had to invite.. You get the idea. And former Arsenal ‘legend’ Perry Groves‘ idea (in cahoots with his friend Josh Landy) is that for a fee you can Play With A Legend. You can hire Perry Groves and his world of stars to peppre your Stag Do or birthday football match with dash of talent.
The star will even stay behind for a post-match drunk. (Paul Merson is on the Vimto.)
As you can imagine, Arsenal players figure in number. There are lots of Spurs players, too. Why not hire one for each team and get stuck in. Bagsy Paul Davis. You can have Darren Anderton.
Transfer Balls: Chelsea, Manchester City, Liverpool And Arsenal Do The OK Koke For Manchester United Star
TRANSFER Balls: The Daily Express says “Barcelona ready to beat Manchester United, Chelsea and Liverpool with a summer bid for Koke”.
As ever, the Express aims to get as many big clubs as possible into its story. The aim – the fabled Full House – is to link a player with the top five English clubs.
Footy expert Bruce Archer tells readers:
…reports in Spain say Koke, along with Lars Bender, is Barcelona’s priority for the summer.
Transfer Balls: Which Player Is Heading To Arsenal, Manchester United, West Ham, Swansea, Everton, Hull And Spurs?
TRANSFER Balls: Marseilles striker Andre Ayew has uttred not word on moving to the Premier League. But that hasn’t stopped the media from speculating:
Daily Express, November 13: “Andre Ayew could join Arsenal, Liverpool or Manchester United for just £1.5m in January”
SpyGhana, November 5: “West Ham looks to sign Andre Ayew”
Liverpool Echo, November 3 2014: “Everton FC transfer gossip: Blues eye Ayew January swoop”
Hull Daily Mail, October 20: “Hull City face competition to bring in the forward during the January transfer window.”
The Sun, October 19: “Liverpool, Everton, Swansea, Hull and West Ham are all keen and are watching developments.”
Daily Express, October 14: “Arsenal, Liverpool, Man Utd and Spurs handed January BOOST with Andre Ayew set for exit”
Daily Star, October 14: “Arsenal, Liverpool, Newcastle, Manchester United and Spurs target Andre Ayew set for January switch”
In other news, Andre Ayew is going to Napoli…
IN London: The Information Capital by James Cheshire and Oliver Uberti, the academics plotted London’s football clubs by popularity on Twitter for the 2013/14 season.
Each square represents 500m x 500m – and its colour indicates the football club with the most-tweeted hashtag in that area.
MANCHESTER United Balls: How fit is Radamel Falcao?
The Sun: “RADAMEL FALCAO’S hopes of returning to action after the international break have been dashed by Louis van Gaal.”
The Star: “Radamel Falcao set to make Man Utd RETURN at Arsenal”
Such are the facts…
TRANSFER Balls: With Arsenal’s defence in a mess, the papers speculate on which stars could join the Gunners.
The Mirror: “Mats Hummels ‘wants Arsenal move’ in January as Dortmund fear centre-back will leave”
The defender is valued at £30m and is also a target for Manchester United but sources in Germany believe the player would prefer a move to the Emirates
Arsenal will pay £30m for Hummels.
ARSENAL fan’s remembrance day special:
One Junior Gunner marked Remembrance Day by lining up his Corinthian figures before kick-off. The Arsenal team and manager maintained a minute’s silence in the face of interruptions, for which his father should be ashamed:
ARSENAL Balls: the Gunners tossed away a 3-0 lead to draw 3-3 with a spirited Anderlecht in the Champions’ League, and the Daily Mirror reports:
Paul Merson slams ”clueless” Arsene Wenger after Arsenal capitulate against Anderlecht
Well, the first Andrelecht goal was offside, the second was a penalty softer given for a ‘foul’ softer than a baby’s bum but the third was down to weak Arsenal defending and a smart finish.
The refereeing was pretty clueless.