IGWE!!!- Thierry Daniel Henry Tribute

Thierry Henry is the present second assistant coach for the Belgian national team. He got the nickname ‘IGWE’ meaning ‘KING’ from his Nigerian supporters during his time at Arsenal where he had a phenomenon goal scoring record. Henry during his playing time scored 360 goals in 792 appearances in all competitions for his club sides, and 51 goals in 123 appearances for the French national team. He also won 18 career trophies for both club and country.

CLUB CAREER:

Henry made his first professional debut with Monaco in 1994, in a 2-0 loss to Nice. Arsene Wenger the coach of Monaco at that time, deployed Henry as a left winger because of his pace and skill on the ball. Henry was named the French best young player of the year in 1996, that year he helped Monaco to a league 1 title and the following season he was instrumental in his club reaching the semi finals of the UCL scoring a record seven (7) goal for Monaco. Henry scored 28 goals in 141 appearances for Monaco before joining Juventus in 1998/1999 season.

He spent just one season at Juventus, he struggled against the defensive nature of teams in Italy and failed to impress as he scored 3 goals in 16 appearances in the league. In 1999, he made a move to England where he joined Arsenal and reunited with his former manager Arsene Wenger.

Henry struggled during his first few months at the club after he was reverted back to a striker and not a left winger. He ended his first season with an impressive 26 goals in the league. His second season proved vital as he became the club top scorer but he was yet to win any trophy for the club. In 2001/2002 season, they finally won the premiere league finishing seven points above Liverpool that season and also won the FA cup. He scored 32 goals in all competitions that season. Henry emerged runner up in 2003 FIFA world player of the year award. In 2003/2004 season, Henry led his team to an historic Premiere League season triumph without losing a single game, it was their ‘Invincible’ season, Henry scored 30 goals in 37 appearances in the league that season.

He tried to win the UCL title for Arsenal but he came up short, they lost the 2006 UCL Final 2-1 to Barcelona. Henry scored 226 goals in 369 appearances for Arsenal making him their highest goal scorer of all time, it was his time at Arsenal that earned him the title ’IGWE’ by his Nigerian fans. Henry moved to Barcelona in 2007 in search of Champions league glory. Henry was voted as Arsenal greatest player by the fans in July 2008 at arsenal.com

Henry was deployed in the wings during his first season at the club (Barcelona) and could not reproduce his goal scoring form he exhibited at Arsenal at the start of the campaign, however, he ended his first season as the club top scorer with 19 goals in the league. Henry superseded his tally in his second season scoring 26 goals, all while playing from the wings. In 2009, Henry finally won the UCL with Barcelona, that year the team won the Treble (League, Cup and UCL) and Henry combined with Messi and Eto’o to score 100 goals between them, later that year, Henry helped Barcelona to win the Sextuple (6 trophies). With the emergence of Pedro in the following season Henry days at the club were numbered and he secured a move to New York Red Bulls in 2010.

Henry made his name in the MLS scoring 51 goals in 122 appearances for his team during his 5 years stay at the club. Henry had a brief loan spell at Arsenal for 2 months in 2012 during the MLS off season to cover for the Arsenal forwards away on international duty (African Nations Cup). He scored just 2 goals in 7 appearances before returning back to NY RedBulls.

On 16 December, 2014 Henry announced his retirement as a player which brought an end to a great career.

INTERNATIONAL CAREER:

Henry made his debut for the French national team in 1997, he was part of the world cup team in 1998 that won the tournament, He ended the tournament as France top scorer with 3 goals. He was a member of the Euro 2000 squad that won the competition, with him scoring 3 goals in that competition also, this was his second major honor for his country. France exited early at the 2002 world cup group stages with Henry being largely unimpressive in that tournament. Henry ended his France career after 2010 world cup embarrassment in South Africa. He scored a total of 51 goals in 123 caps for France winning the World cup, UEFA Euros, FIFA confederations cup.

Post-Retirement:

Henry began to work for Sky Sports as a pundit for over three years, during this time, he was named the 2nd assistant coach for Belgium. He collected a 3rd place medal at Russia 2018 FIFA world cup with Belgium, as his home country France won the competition. Henry quit his role at Sky Sport after the tournament to concentrate on his coaching career.

Henry is loved among all football faithful and has a special place in the hearts of Arsenal supporters. A true legend of the game and I wish him great success in his coaching endeavors in the future.

About Oyakhi

Am an avid football fan and a Barcelona fan at heart. I give my own opinion on various trending football topics.

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