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Thierry Henry: The Truth

With Thierry Henry ruled out for the rest of the season, many quarters are calling on our greatest ever goal scorer to call time on his Arsenal career.

Our lack lustre season has somehow become the fault of our captain, lots of people bemoaning the player for his first true bad season for the Gunners.

Or so people would have you believe.

Ok, so as the talisman will not feature again this season his Premiership tally for the term will remain on 10. But when you look at the figures, it's not all bad.

Fact number 1) Thierry Henry played over 50 competitive games last season.

Fact number 2) Henry's amazing goal scoring antics dragged Arsenal kicking and screaming in to the Gunner's first European cup final, and secured 4th place in the league after a mammoth fight with arch rivals, Tottenham Hotspur.

Fact number 3) After running himself ragged in the Champions League final, Henry went on to feature in the France team that played the maximum amount of world cup games, and indeed, even went to extra time in the final.

Fact number 4) Henry had only a short amount of time to recuperate before rejoining his Arsenal team mates.

Fact number 5) Henry not only bears the burden of being chief goal scorer for the Gunners, he also wears the albatross of captain.

Fact number 6) Arsenal entered their new home at the beginning of the season 2006/07. In recent time every team to move home has struggled to find form in it's first season.

Fact number 7) Thierry has suffered injury after injury for the entire course of his season, and indeed has played through the pain for most of the time.

This season has seen the emergence of Chelsea's Didier Drogba & Man Utd's Cristiano Ronaldo, indeed the pair top the Premier League scoring charts respectively.

It is believed that these two players will go head to head in the fight for the title of Premiership player of the year. Each man having his best season in England to date.

This is Theirry Henry's 'worst'.

Whilst Drogba and Ronaldo have suffered the pressures of having to perform, neither have had anywhere near the pressures of Thierry Henry.

Now lets have a look at some stats.

Didier Drogba; Premiership leading scorer has played 28 times for Chelsea in the league this campaign, racking up 2506 minutes, scoring 18 goals at a rate of 0.64 goals per game. That's 139 minutes per goal.

Cristiano Ronaldo; Second top scorer, has played 26 times for Man Utd in the league, racking up 2308 minutes, scoring 16 goals at a rate of 0.62 goals per game. That's 144 minutes per goal.

Now to our leader.

Thierry Henry; Henry has played 17 times for the Gunners in the league this season, amassing 1571 minutes playing time, scoring 10 goals at a rate of 0.59 goals per game. That's 157 minutes per goal.

Now the difference between two players having the time of their lives, and a man carrying the burden of an entire club after literally no rest and being riddled with injuries, in his supposed 'worst season ever' is minimal, in actual fact, Henry has kept up with these guys despite everything going against him.

Remember folks, this is not an opinion, it's fact.

Enjoy your rest Thierry, we look forward to seeing a fully fit Henry at the beginning of next season. Well, we the Arsenal fans are, the rest of the country will be crapping themselves.

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

The Journalist

Writer: Rocky7 Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Sunday March 11 2007

Time: 2:46AM

Your Comments (oldest first)

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thank you. now everyone lay off our captain. next season he will be back and better than ever.
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11/03/2007 03:05:00

The reason why some Arsenal 'fans' have been suggesting we should sell Thierry Henry is because they are fickle. We have ***** fans. I wish Henry all the best and I can not wait for him to come back next season and fire us (and maybe France) to glory. European & World Player of the Year 2008.
Lex touched me.
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11/03/2007 03:10:00

No doubt hew is a great player and he will stay so there is not point suggesting that he should be sold. I still believe it was mistake to make him captain but thats just my opinion.
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11/03/2007 04:09:00

Honestly after all titi has given ous club how in fu(ks name can anyone even begin to say we should flog him? Unbelievable is what it is, you lot can bog off and and support those fickle fu(ks down 7 sisters cos you sure as $hit can't call yourself Gooners....
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11/03/2007 04:59:00

hes going to spain for his ollay days
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11/03/2007 05:00:00

I've been saying this all season, without the precise facts to back it up but still saying the same thing. The stupidest ***** is the same people who are saying we should sell Henry are the ones saying we need a natural goal scorer, (how much more of a natural goalscorer do you want for *****s sake?) and are still pist at Wenger bout selling Vieira, but want our greatest ever player to be sold. MUPPETS. Arsenal fans are spoilt, you cant win every year thats just how it is. If 2 trophy less seasons starts this sort of endless moaning you are not a Gooner, you are a glory hunter so ***** off to Chelsea! I actually read some ***** on another site saying they were going to sell there season ticket for the rest of the year because Wenger and Henry are disgraces, for some one who has never even been able to see my club play in person that is like blasphemy, treason. I'm as down as the next gooner but you follow your team through thick and thin, or dont follow them at all. Thank you for finally writing the facts on Henry's year.
Ozi Gooner
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11/03/2007 05:50:00

Well said OZ I used to be a regular on the teamtalk forum but had enough cos of the number of so called supporters calling for Wenger's head after every so-so result really fu(ked me off so i called it a day... please, please don't let vital go the same route cos its one of the best Gooner communities on the net... the only big mistake the boss made made was making Henry captain.Years ago i was on a 5 friggin year waiting list for a season ticket, couldn't get to a match without forking out 80 odd quid for a ticket of a tout-made me crazy hearing the chants from my gaff, and now there are fickle w@nkbags gonna give up their tickets after a disapointing season?! I'd be happy to hear it except i now live in thailand and won't benefit from the short-sightednes of these spuds in disguise.... Honestly it makes of sick to the teeth... supporting a team means through thick and thin, and despite not winning anything (bar numerous plaudits) things aren't exactly bleak are they? If anything im happy with much i have seen this season, there is much to look forward to....
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11/03/2007 06:28:00

Apologies 4 the mistypes... not easy ranting using predictive text...of meant to be me...
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11/03/2007 06:34:00

This season is not over we still have to make sure we enter the C.L next year. Sell Titi you must be joking, the best is still to come. Get rid of Le boss; that statement beggars belief. In the dark days of the 50's and parts of the 60's the gunners were and always will be the only team for me. These players we have now will be the greatest team Arsenal has ever known. In a way I am glad we have time to rest, the drain on the players has been terrible. How many Arsenal players represented their countries in the world cup, we have had injuries that would have decimated any other club in the E.P.L. We have young players waiting off stage waiting to get a chance to play for the first team; this is the team of the future and silver ware will be coming back to the club. Go you Gunners.
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11/03/2007 07:53:00

bang on Rocky, i've always been one of Titi's biggest supporters through thick and thin, and can't stand these muppets who criticise him at every given opportunity. He will be back next season better than ever before and what a season it will be for our club. but having said that, this season isn't over just yet, we can still finish 2nd and seal the automatic Champions League place..
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11/03/2007 10:31:00

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11/03/2007 10:45:00

"I hope to get back to full fitness soon and will then look forward to having a great season with Arsenal next year." - Titi Le Mesiah. That quote is posted to remind all the mugs (although there arent normally too many on here) who think Henry will pack his bags at the end of the season due to ireconcilable differences with Le Prof (HA) of his dedication to the team, and the similarity of the comments to the ones he made last season when he decided to stay after Paris. 4 MORE YEARS, 4 MORE YEARS! HENRY FOR POPE!
Ozi Gooner
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11/03/2007 11:05:00

Good article...although it gives statistical proof that Titi is still not doing so bad, that's only one part of the argument - the other less tangible one is about commitment and loyalty. Football, like life, is ups and downs and we cant simply walk away from a situation/player/manager at the first sign of difficulty! Titi is not perfect (ok, he's god I know, but even so) but that just means that when he overcomes whats holding him back, he'll come back stronger... If players or people didnt have difficulties or challenges to overcome they would never achieve or improve anything. The problems he (and the team) are facing are meant to test our resolve and give us the chance to push onto a higher plane. Ok, ok, sorry about the sermon! Go the Gunners...!!!!
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11/03/2007 11:39:00

Well said lads. He 's still our Titi and we love him! In all honesty, most of the people who seem to be suggesting he should leave are pundits and reporters who swear allegience to other clubs. Hidden agendas I reckon! Anyway, Titi's as important to us now as he's always been and I for one can't wait to see him back fully fit next season!
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11/03/2007 13:47:00

I don't think too many supporters have said he should be sold, however I think there is a very good argument that another top striker with experience should be brought in & that Titi should not be automatic first choice. His age is against him & the injuries over the past two seasons are seriously unlikely to get less regular. No player should be guranteed a first team place regardless of past achievements. Toure played more games than Henry last season & he is still going strong despite the fact he never gets a rest, so all this rubbish about the world cup etc is just an excuse. Henry was given an extended break after the world cup, others who had to play in the cl qualifier weren't so lucky!!
Ashburton Gooner
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11/03/2007 14:51:00

AG, I'm sure u've been on the forum, and u've seen that a few fans HAVE been asking him to shape up, or be shipped out. I agree with you that no player should be guaranteed a starting place, but I think Henry has kinda earned that for himself in the short run atleast. Frankly, the stats look good but its his on-field effort that fans were *****ed off with (when no one knew it was coz of injury) !! Now that everything has been explained (courtesy Le Prof and Rocky's article here), I think we will see those fans off his back for the time being. He hasnt had a decent run this season, and u cant blame him for that right away, especially after 6 fantastic seasons for us.
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11/03/2007 15:36:00

Your article is based on nothing. Who exactly has said Henry should call time on his career at Arsenal? Three or four people on the Internet? It's not exactly representative of all Arsenal supporters is it? 99.9% of Arsenal fans want Henry to stay, however, there is small chance Wenger thinks otherwise, however, he has a history of cashing in on players slightly before their sell by date. I don't think Henry is the same player as before or ever will be, because he's lost is electric pace. But he is still easily capable of scoring 20-25 goals a season.
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11/03/2007 15:42:00

It's not all as cut and dry as this you know. There are two reasons Wenger sells a player, i) as in the case of Overmars, Petit and Vieira- lack of motivation. I think in the last three seasons Henry has looked complacent at times, such is his standing in the team. I think we have seen a sizeable shift this year, because this is Cesc's team now not Henry's, TH will have to adapt to this and I agree with AG, another striker should be bought in in the summer because his fitness will not get better and he won't be able to do sixty games a year anymore, that's just a fact. The second reason Wenger sells a player is when they become injury prone. The quiescent attitude of many has contributed to TH's laziness at times, frankly, 90% of the people I speak to on the away scheme think he will be sold. I'm not so sure, but I do know he's been a great servant but he's got something to prove now. I hope this is all down to injuries and he comes out raring to go next year, frankly he hasn't looked that way to me for a while. Me asking for more effort from him does not make me a bad fan or give anyone a right to question my value as a supporter. There are less than a hundred Arsenal fans who have been to more games than I have in the last seven years, the fact that TH is capable of these goals at half tilt frustrates me more, because what he could do when he's wound up beggars belief. I think we may see TH in the Bergkamp role next year, and I think that might be a good idea.
Little Dutch
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11/03/2007 15:53:00

LD, I cannot see Henry ever accepting the bergkamp role as his ego wont allow it. Bergkamp was always willing to do the work & allow others (most notably Henry) to get all the glory. Henry would never have that.................I personally don't want wenger to even consider selling him, but what I do want is another striker of top quality brought in. The whole reason Henry gets so much stick when he form & attitude drops by even the smallest amount is because arsenal have never had anyone to take over that workload (scoring & creating goals). It's about time we did.
Ashburton Gooner
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11/03/2007 16:02:00

LD and Ash, I understand your views in our need for another striker, but Van Persie and Ade ar still young and may turn out to be totally amazing. It's such a hard one to call though! Will they or won't they make it. Before his injury Van Persie was looking awesome. Ade is never going to be a 20-30 goals a season man, but he is complete nuisance to defend against. He is Kanu with workrate and more goals. Baps is a great player, but everybody seems to have lost patience with him already which, bearing in mind the settling down periods that other overseas players have been allowed, is criminal to me, nothing more, nothing less. I honestly think that if we took the pressure of the transfer/loan situation from Baps shoulders he will become the second super striker that we need. In my opinion, we have nearly all the answers within, though I think a goalkeeper should be on the menu.
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11/03/2007 16:18:00

Well.NExt year will be our year..hope titi get some nice rest, our youngster will have the hunger to win..if lehmann want to leave, almunia can cover but in my opinion, we need a better goal keeper.
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11/03/2007 16:39:00

Soz lads my rant wasn't aimed at you lot, it was more aimed at at of the shlte i've come across on various forums and i just went of on one...
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11/03/2007 16:41:00

Get well Tel boy, after this season to forget (for him and us!) he'll be back later in the year, hungry and with a point to prove. OK Bap and Ali you've been asking for a run of games and here they are so step up and shine. Fourth place is far from guaranteed with the tricky remaining fixtures so channel that frustration and anger from the cups' exits into the funky free flow with deadly finishing.
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11/03/2007 17:57:00

I certainly agree that this is a chance for Baptisat and Aliadiere. I am in total agreement with flv about the Beast, it has to be pretty unsettling to be on loan in another country with no idea if you're there long term. I think TH will play the Bergkamp role, my point about his ego is more to do with him accepting that the team is built around Fabregas.
Little Dutch
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11/03/2007 18:03:00

This whole topic has enraged me somewhat,so what your saying is that we shouldn`t have an opnion!,end of debate,support us in what we say or be cast down the road to spudland.Now don`t get me wrong i love Mr Theirry Henry,the mans a god,a legend,i`d get down on my knees and bow in front of him if i saw him, but you all talk of knowing he will come back next season stronger and as good as he was before,i really hope he does,but what if he doesn`t!!!,we all saw what happened to the great PV4.the thing that i see that draws me to a conculsion of being rid of him be it sold or bartered(prefering bartering as you get a chance of getting another world class player) is that we all know through injury and an extreme workload this last season has not been his best,the loss of iriplaceable DB10 and Pires at the same time,the other thing that seems to be lost(witch to me the most important aspect of his game) is that intuitive chemistry like he had with them two,i can`t see it there now with this current crop of what amazing talent we`ve have now,nor can i see it happening unless Mr wenger brings someone in who would compliment that area,i.e Ribery is the only one i can see having this.If we don`t get him then i can`t the harm in swopping TH14 for Eto who would scare the pants of every premiership defender. Just to throw in as well another swap with Juve with giberto or freddie + the money they owe us and try to get buffon,give the beast back to real get Johnny boy in the heart of the defence,and buy cesc`s good friend Fernando with the funds from selling i`m getting to big for my boots Ade who`s never gonna get my vote.Condem me if you will it`s my opnion and what i hope for,but we only live in hope. i
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11/03/2007 18:22:00

I don't accept that there is a problem with Henry's attitude, he has always behaved in the way he does, it's just that when the goals were flying in nobody gave a *****, no we're going through a rough patch people seem to have a problem with it. It's part and parcel of the player. He obviously hasn't been playing to his full potential because of his injurys, and of he's going to lose some of his pace because his body will not be functioning at 100%.
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11/03/2007 18:43:00

If Eto becomes available, a few teams, and one in particular will be waving 50m around, so it's not even worth contemplating a swap. Besides, Titi is a proven Premiership goalscorer. Even having a bad season by his standards, he's still managed to score 10 goals and two of those were pretty memorable. If I had to choose between the two then I'd personally rather take a calculated gamble on Titi, rather than an out and out gamble on Eto. Not many big name players come to the Premiership and become an overnight success, and some don't do much at all, Veron, Kezman, Stam etc. So yep, as things stand, it's Titi everytime for me.
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11/03/2007 19:09:00

I dont think that the team is built around Fab like LD says - even if Fab is the real hub on the pitch, it's still very much TH14's team for better and for worse. I really dont believe that he will take the DB10 role yet. Rocky, the reason nobody had a problem with Titi was because there was another natural leader (Paddy) in the heart of the team. Now Henry is the focal point it emphases his ego, and I have no problem with ego in a striker, but prefer it when he's not the captain. Maybe we need another 'big' player in the team to motivate Thierry and balance his ego a bit (in a positve way).
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11/03/2007 19:24:00

flv, i hear what your saying but there aint many players you pay 50 mill for,titi is one Eto is another,the reason their worth that much is because their exceptional players who have amazing talants,however if either could do with a fresh challange to revitalise their buzz for reaching their potential why not.
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11/03/2007 19:34:00

Looking at this season, with Giggs and Scholes playing so well, it does give me renewed hope that top players can perform brilliantly even after turning 30. I think Titi will be there arsenor, and bearing in mind that he's missed most of this season, I think he'll be refreshed and ready to go come August. The other thing to look at in regards to the swap deal is that, Frank R will have noticed the dip in Titi's form and taking into consideration the ages of the players he'd probably take Titi plus 10-15 million. The problem is, somebody else could offer Shevchenko and 40 million. I'd personally love to see both up front for us, but I just haven't got enough limbs to sell off to raise the transfer funds, doh! 8-) Totally agree with you on the Buffon thing though. All I want for summer is a keeper who can come out and comfortably catch a cross without any fuss.
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11/03/2007 19:53:00

Can't believe people are telling Henry to hang up his boots! Hey, send him to Rotherham, we could do with a half fit Henry!!! And, flv, we need a keeper too - one who can preferably catch the ball!!!
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11/03/2007 20:09:00

lol, sorry herring! We sometimes forget that other teams have far greater problems than our own. One win might trigger a good run of results for your guys mate, but it's gotta happen next game or two. Good luck anyhow.
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11/03/2007 20:25:00

Great article, i hope the numbers will finally shut up the haters. I mean, can u truly call your self a fan when u start complaining after our best player ever has one decent season.
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11/03/2007 20:47:00

In all, Henry has scored 226 goals in 337 games for his club. More importantly, he has more or less carried Arsenal in the three seasons preceding this one. In that spell, he scored 113 goals in 168 games for club and country. Broken down, that translates into 38 in 56, 31 in 49 and 44 in 63. It is a phenomenal record. In that period, Freddie Ljungberg (26), Jose Reyes (18), Robin van Persie (17) and Dennis Bergkamp (16) contributed just 77 goals between them. In those three seasons, his closest ally — both on the pitch and off — was Robert Pires, who came up with 47 goals. Ljungberg, Rosicky, Cesc Fabregas and Alex Hleb, believe it or not, have managed three league goals between them all season. - THAT'S the sort of burden Henry has had to carry for this club (that wasn't even getting into his assists record, he's arguably the most unselfish center forward in Europe), and for the last two seasons he's been asked to do this as a lone striker. That's why I've preferred to give him the benefit of the doubt this year, especially when one of the Arsenal trainers was saying just after the World Cup that Henry would probably need to miss the first month of the season in order to fully rest up for this campaign. Turns out he was bang on the money.
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11/03/2007 21:53:00

Good Artical well written and facts are facts. As a non Arsenal supporter Henry is a brilliant player, even on an off day.
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11/03/2007 23:12:00

While we are all bagging henry and talking about the great and indespensible Bergkamp and Pires, lets remember Dennis didnt score for a whole year and we still loved him no one asked for his head, Bobby was never the same player after his knee injury, much like freddy now (although still contributed more goals). Henry will never take the Bergkamp role, its just not him, heard that so many times but just cant see it, as Rocky says the pace and effort issue could be very much to do with playing with injuries and injections and a long rest could bring back the greyhound. I also think it is still Henry's team and not Cesc's (when he is playing). If it is now Cesc's team that is very short sighted, cos as much as i hate to think it he might not be around for all that long. People who say we need another world class striker seem to forget we have RVP, world class in my opinion and becoming less selfish and more able to put away the simple ones everygame. Adebayor can only get better as is still just 21, and will be a player willing to accept a largely substitute/cameo role where as i cant see Robin excepting that so another striker such as Eto'o (not gonna happen), Huntellar, Villa or Torres will likely result in his departure, as he has quite an ego. Rosicky will chip in with goals, he is that type of player. Cesc looks like a little more practice and he could add a few too. Dont see Hleb scoring alot, but Denilson can, and so can Walcott with some confidence. I still think a wide mid and GK could be useful but a another striker defender or CM could potentially destroy the dressing room and confidence of the young players.
Ozi Gooner
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12/03/2007 09:58:00

Chelsea won't buy Eto'o. If we go for another striker he won't be African. This is purely pragmatic as we will be losing Drogba, Essien, Kalou and Mikel to the Africa Nations Cup next season. We need cover for Drogba. It would be a real shame if Henry comes back a lesser player I have always loved watching him.
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12/03/2007 10:25:00

ozi,dont forget we have merida to come through,who is in the messi mould
fran merida
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12/03/2007 10:58:00

That is pretty arrogant there Francisco, speaking of your self so highly! I still havent even seen you play, liked what i've seen on highlights but.
Ozi Gooner
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12/03/2007 11:26:00

If Arsenal fans don't want Henry anymore, we will gladly take him off your hands. It would stop him scoring against us at the very least. ;-)
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12/03/2007 11:42:00

I think this has become Cesc's team in the last few months. Henry is at an age now where he cannot play 60+ games a season, Cesc is and I think over xmas he really assumed the mantle. Henry is a different player now, he is not the type who will run a game for nenety minutes like he used to. This is why I think he'll assume the Bergkamp role, Wenger has said he sees him there, because he is more a player now who will give us moments of brilliance while Cesc keeps things ticking over. This is what happened with Bergkamp who was the fulcrum of our team until Henry took over. Not to do with form or status, more a natural progression.
Little Dutch
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12/03/2007 12:24:00

A good write up on life without Henry. Its full of positives for Henry, and I for one believe that he can come back strong. His role in the team HAS to change, its evolution.
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12/03/2007 13:12:00

the man is genius plain and simple.. most pundits have said he is suffering from burnout at his ripe of age, and being a few years older than Thierry, i know how he feels ! takes me a little longer to recover nowadays from physical exertion ( don't tell mrs gold that though ! )... so he has the summer off, and BANG wait till August when the master will return and woe betide anyone who writes him off !
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12/03/2007 13:50:00


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