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French Football president explains why Thierry Henry hasn't coached France

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Thierry Henry has been retired from the beautiful game for nearly two years now but has found a career in coaching tough going.

After hanging up his boots, the ex-striker immediately turned to punditry for Sky Sports but coaching always appeared to be the long term goal.

Henry did take his first small step into management by assisting with Arsenal's Under-18 team as part of his Uefa A Licence course, however, was forced to step away from the role in the summer as it became too difficult to combine his punditry duties with coaching.

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He has since been given a lifeline by Roberto Martinez to assist the Spaniard for Belgium's senior national team and his ambition to become a manager is now possible again.

It appeared quite a random appointment at the time and it was a little surprising the 39-year-old wasn't snapped up by his country first, who he represented 123 times as a player.

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Current manager Didier Deschamps was part of the same triumphant French team who won the World Cup in 1998 but has resisted to temptation to bring his former teammate into his coaching staff.

And the French Football Federation's president, Noel Le Graet, has tried to explain why no approach was made, but it isn't exactly convincing.

Le Graet was speaking on French radio station RMC earlier this week and pointed towards Henry and Deschamps' respective personalities as one of the reasons the pair haven't worked together.

“I must say I don’t have a lot of contact with Thierry," Le Graet said.

FBL-BEL-WC-2018-TRAINING

"In the national team, there’s not a lot to offer him. Didier has his staff.

“The two of them in the same one, I’m not certain it would work. The strikers are scoring goals, there’s no problem. They are two strong characters. You mustn’t put two strong characters on the same staff.

“That’s not to say that [Deschamps’ long-time assistant coach] Guy Stephan isn’t a strong character. For the senior team, it’s not possible. Perhaps we should have met. He didn’t show a desire to talk either.”

Safe to say Le Graet's explanation doesn't really make much sense but France's loss is Belgium's gain and in particular, Romelu Lukaku's.

Everton v Middlesbrough - Premier League

The Everton striker has already felt the benefit of Henry's guidance and after Belgium's 4-0 win over Bosnia-Herzegovina, he hailed the impact of the Arsenal hero.

"I think he [Henry] teaches me a lot. He is very direct with me," Lukaku told reporters, as per ESPN.

"I know what I'm doing well, when I am doing something wrong he tells me as well. I am very pleased with his help here.

"He's won it all so when someone like him talks, you listen."

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Topics:
Thierry Henry
Football
Premier League
Romelu Lukaku
Belgium Football
Arsenal

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