Thierry Henry’s latest comments will have warmed the hearts of Arsenal fans around the world.
One of the Gunners' most loved sons has expressed his desire to return to the club, though it will not be to play, as he did in January and February this year.
Henry confirmed he would be keen to open talks with the Emirates Stadium club about heading back to north London in some capacity once he hangs up his boots.
“Eventually I’d like to go back to Arsenal,” Henry said in The Telegraph.
“I don’t know how, it depends. Seriously, I don’t know (what it will be). I just want to finish my career (first).
“I would go back to England, for sure, with Arsenal. Coaching does interest me but I really don’t think about it right now.”
Sentimentality aside, having Henry on the coaching staff would be a massive boon to manager Arsene Wenger, if his own words on Arsenal’ all-time record goalscorer are true.
“It can only be positive,” said the Frenchman when confirming Henry’s short-term loan in January
“He has exceptional talent. He is experienced, he is quality, and can help the players on and off the pitch.
“He is a super-intelligent guy and he is a special talent.”
The 34-year-old admitted playing again is probably out of the question but, as he did when Henry helped out for two months, Wenger may well see having Henry on his backroom staff as being without a downside.
The New York Red Bulls forward scored two goals (originally three but his deflected striker against Aston Villa was changed to an own goal), but he was not quite in the sort of shape that Arsenal fans were used to.
His influence on the team was undeniable though and the players were visibly lifted soon after his arrival – a welcomes effect given the struggles Wenger’s side were having around then.
If, as Wenger says, Henry is “a super-intelligent guy” then he should be useful on the training pitch, especially with players like Theo Walcott, who is in desperate need of some direction.
There are few that exceed Henry when it comes to quality, but that is not always translated into coaching or managerial excellence.
Even if the former France international cannot make the transition to management successfully, it does not mean he would be entirely useless; you couldn’t get many better to coach on the specifics of forward play and goalscoring.
Passion for the club is another plus point to his return; Henry spoke in incredibly sentimental terms about the Gunners during his loan spell, admitting to being a big fan of the club since leaving the first time.
Wenger’s recently retired number two, Pat Rice, was another who genuinely loved the club and you would hope this feeling was translated into the players he coach.
That passion, combined with the stature he has at the club and his intelligence, would make Henry singularly suited to a role at Arsenal, educating and guiding future Gunners legends.
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