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Thierry Henry        

World soccer legend

 Henry is known as one of the greatest football strikers of this era. Henry is one of the most feared strikers in the world. His dribbling skills and on-field vision makes him the successor to the legendary Zinedine Zidane on the French national team. He currently plays as a striker for the French national team, and for the English club Arsenal, where he is that club's all-time leading scorer in both league matches and all competitions.

Henry has been nominated twice for the FIFA World Player of the Year, both times finishing runner-up in 2003 and 2004. Also, he was named by Pel� as one of the top 125 greatest living footballers in March 2004[1]. However, his side arsenal have not managed to beat rivals manchester united in the league since they won the double in 2002, and it is often claimed that Henry never performd well against the red devils

He has surpassed Ian Wright to take over as Arsenal's all-time leading scorer with over 200 goals for the club. In 2006, Henry was the first player to score more than 20 goals in five consecutive seasons and he claimed the "Golden Boot" (most goals scored) in 2002, 2004, 2005 and 2006.

On 19 May 2006, despite months of speculation linking him with Spanish club Barcelona, he renewed his contract at Arsenal under a 4-year deal until 2010.

Thierry Henry trained at the French Football Federation's academy at Clairefontaine and played at a youth level for CO Les Ulis (1983-1989), then Palaiseau (1989-1990), Viry-Ch�tillon (1990-1992) and FC Versailles (1992-1993). Henry started his professional career at AS Monaco and was given his d�but in 1994 by then Monaco manager, Ars�ne Wenger at the tender age of 17. Thierry was put on the left wing by Wenger instead of playing his natural role of striker because the striker position was already occupied by Brazilian Sonny Anderson.

The Frenchman made his international debut in November 1997 against South Africa. Four months earlier, he played for the U-20 French national team in the 1997 FIFA World Youth Championship. He played in France's 1998 World Cup success, and was joint top-scorer for France with three goals. Subsequently, on Bastille Day 1998, he was awarded France's highest decoration, the L�gion d'Honneur. He also was part of the Euro 2000 winning squad, scoring a further three goals. He was also leading goalscorer and named player of the tournament as France hosted and won the 2003 Confederations Cup.

Having impressed in the French national team's triumph in the 1998 World Cup, Henry left Monaco and moved to Italian club Juventus in January 1999 for �10.7 million. At Juventus, Thierry was made to play on the wing and in an unfamiliar position he was unable to cope with Italian defensive discipline, scoring just three goals while starting only 12 games for the Bianconeri.

Unsettled in Italy, he transferred from Juventus in August 1999 to Arsenal for �10.5 million, reuniting with his former manager at Monaco, Wenger. At Arsenal, Wenger brought Henry back to his familiar role of a striker, where he has flourished ever since. In the seven seasons he has been at Arsenal, Henry has been the club's top goalscorer for every single one. He was made Arsenal captain in the summer of 2005, succeeding the recently departed Patrick Vieira. Regarded by many as Arsenal's best player ever, on October 18, 2005 Henry became the club's top goalscorer of all time; two goals against Sparta Prague meant he broke Ian Wright's record of 185 first-class goals. On February 1, 2006, he scored a goal against West Ham, bringing his league goal tally up to 151 and thus breaking Cliff Bastin's Arsenal league goals record. The 2005-2006 season also saw him score his 100th league goal at Highbury, a feat unparallelled in the history of the club, and a unique achievement in the Premier League. He also contributes a large number of assists - most notably 23 in the 2002-03 season - an all-time Premiership record.

Henry has received many plaudits and awards. He was runner-up for the 2003 and 2004 FIFA World Player of the Year award while helping Arsenal to an unbeaten record (26 wins, 12 draws) in the Premiership when many thought he was the best player in the world during that period. He has also won the Football Writers' Association Footballer of the Year three times, the PFA Players' Player of the Year twice, and the French Player Of The Year on four occasions - an all-time record. In 2004-05, despite Arsenal being the runners-up in the Premiership, Henry emerged with the European Golden Boot for the second consecutive year (albeit sharing it with Villarreal's Diego Forlan in 2005). He is the first ever player to retain the award.

On May 7, 2006 Henry scored a hat-trick against Wigan Athletic in the club's final game at Highbury. In an emotionally-charged game that ended with Arsenal securing a place in next season's Champions League ahead of local rivals Tottenham Hotspur, the last of Henry's three strikes and the final goal at the old stadium, was a penalty in front of the North Bank. After scoring the penalty, Henry knelt down in a final gesture to kiss the Highbury pitch goodbye.

In the UEFA Champions League 2005-06, Arsenal led the group stages and only conceded 2 goals leading up to the final in Paris. A strike from Henry gave Arsenal a 1-0 win on aggregate against Spanish Giants Real Madrid in the first knockout round. An assist to Fabregas and a goal knocked Juventus out of the quarter-finals. Henry met Barcelona in a star-studded final in Paris on May 17, 2006. Although having taken the early lead, the team lost by 2-1, and Henry attracted harsh criticism for missing chances to secure the title for Arsenal, being (twice) denied only by the goalkeeper Victor Valdes.

Throughout the 2005-06 season Henry was linked with a move to Barcelona or Real Madrid, however he eventually decided to stay with Arsenal, declaring his loyalty and love for the club and accepting a four-year contract after the Champions League final [1]. Hennry is currently third in the list of all-time English Premiership goal scorers, 96 goals behind Alan Shearer who is in first place, and twenty one goals behind Andy Cole in second place.

Arsenal vice-chairman David Dein claimed the club turned down two bids of �50 million "from Spanish clubs" for Thierry Henry before the signing of the new contract. If either of these bids had been accepted it would have made Henry the most expensive player in the world - breaking the previous transfer record of �47million paid by Spanish side Real Madrid for Zinedine Zidane in 2001.


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Roy Hodgson has plenty of attacking options at his disposal going into this summer’s tournament, leaving Rooney with a fight to secure his place on the plane.

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