Thierry Henry is ready to start for Arsenal, declares ArsÃ¨ne Wenger
Arsenal boss ArsÃ¨ne Wenger says he would have no problem starting Thierry Henry for the Gunners' trip to Swansea City
ArsÃ¨ne Wenger insists Thierry Henry is ready to start for Arsenal ahead of the Gunners’ trip to Swansea City on Sunday.
The 34-year-old sealed a fairytale return to north London when he came off the bench to score a trademark finish against Leeds and fire the Gunners into the FA Cup fourth round on Monday.
And Wenger is adamant that the Frenchman, on loan from MLS side New York Red Bulls, is in good enough condition to start this weekend’s Premier League clash.
“He is ready to start,” Wenger told a news conference on Friday. “He was ready to start against Leeds but the most important thing is that he helps the team to win the games. I cannot tell you today what will happen on Sunday.
“He can make us win games by coming off the bench and he can make us win games starting them. He just wants to help the team to win the game.
“He has been very happy in training. It’s a big gamble when you come back like that [but Monday] was a perfect night for him and for us.”
Wenger’s side return to top-flight action after suffering a 2-1 defeat by Fulham at Craven Cottage in their last league outing – and the Arsenal boss is still frustrated at the manner of that loss.
“We feel that we produce the needed performance to win the game,” he continued. “Unfortunately, it’s down to the mistakes we made late in the game and we want to bounce back quickly.”
Wenger, who also revealed that Jack Wilshere remains on course for a return to action in mid-February, believes Arsenal’s north London rivals Tottenham are in with a chance of winning the league this term.
“Why not? Mathematically they are in a position to do it,” he said. “They have good players. I’m not a specialist of Tottenham, I’m a specialist of Arsenal but they are a good side.
“There is a long way to go at the moment and it still is very open. There is no team at the moment that dominates this championship in my opinion.”
The 62-year-old also paid tribute to Swansea ahead of his side’s trip to Wales. He added: “They have the quality to play in the Premier League because they play positive football.
“They master the possession in many games so that means they have the technical quality to be where they are – and over 38 games that pays off.”