Arsene Wenger hails Thierry Henry’s impact on and off the pitch

Arsene Wenger believes Thierry Henry has handed Arsenal a "big boost" while being an inspiration to the Gunners' youngsters

arsene wenger
Arsene Wenger's side are currently in fourth position in the Premier League PA Photos

arsene wenger

Arsene Wenger has hailed Thierry Henry’s impact both on and off the pitch at Arsenal during the French striker’s two-month loan spell from New York Red Bulls.

The 34-year-old netted his 229th Gunners goal as he grabbed a late winner in a 2-1 win over Sunderland, taking his tally to three goals since his return to The Emirates.

But as well as his contributions on the pitch, Wenger has also been left impressed by Henry’s attitude in the dressing room and in training.

“We must say that he was on fantastic on the pitch and off the pitch in the dressing room,” Wenger told Arsenal’s website. “He has given us a big boost at Sunderland and against Leeds as well, so let’s hope we can continue like that.

“He is intelligent and he has the respect of the players. He has done it before so they listen to his advice. He just has a helpful attitude and when you have done what he has done, players listen to you.

“He was also very positive to keep the confidence level high, because we were in a bit of a crisis with losing three games. When you are a young player, the spirit drops quickly. He just tried to keep the spirit high in the camp.”

Henry could feature in the final game of his loan period in Arsenal’s Champions League last-16 clash at AC Milan on Wednesday.

And Wenger admits talk of the former Barcelona striker returning for a third spell at the club next season is premature.

“It’s a difficult question to answer just after the game,” he said. “First of all I did not think he would be back at all, it was just when he asked me if he could do some fitness work with us.

“But I realised that it was still all there, especially the appetite. I think he enjoys it.”

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