The King retires, but he’ll be back…

by .



So, Thierry retired from football. Wasn’t sure why this was news. Didn’t we know he was going to Sky?

Anyway. The great man packs it all in. The greatest players to grace the Premier League. A striker that will always be relevant. Technically perfect, audacious, incredibly fast, strong and fit as an ox.

I’m not into writing love letters, but I’ll give a few words on Thierry.

They say your first relationship defines how the rest of them eek out. If you’re cheated on early doors, you’re mistrusting. If you cheat and get away with it you might always do that.

Well, football has a similar thing going on. In my formative years, I was spoilt. I grew up with Ian Wright, one of the most exciting players I’d ever had the pleasure of. Fun, unpredictable and full of goals. Look back on a video of his contributions if you get the chance, you forget how good he was. So talented. Then my next love was Bergkamp. Cool, sophisticated and technically brilliant. I’d never seen a player so calm and spectacular all at the same time. The we had Nik Anelka. I really liked him. I mean, I was dazzled by his speed an style. I’d never seen anything like him. He burst onto the scene and had it all… but then doubt crept in. Is he… you know… talking to other clubs? I didn’t want to believe it. So much loyalty from the last two. What was Nik up to? Then he broke my heart. He left for Madrid. I was a broken man… how could we replace him? The most exciting striker in the Premier League…

Well, it didn’t take long. Thierry Henry was a player I knew from Championship Manager. Then we saw him at the world cup. He was a young exciting winger that had had a bad time at Juventus. I knew he’d be good because he was good on the computer game (kid logic).

Well, he was a bit all over the place to start with, but then the goals started to flow. He had everything Anelka had, blended with the best bits of Dennis, blended with pure Thierry.

He was incredible. I’ve never felt so safe with a player in my team. You knew that it didn’t matter how down the chips were, there was always a chance Thierry could save the day. He made half chances look like tap ins. He made breezing past defenders look easy. He was the King and I’ll always be grateful to him for the good times he brought to the club.

There were so many amazing performances. That goal against United where he chipped up for himself, turned and volleyed over Barthez. The solo mazy run against Liverpool to keep us invincible. How he helped us destroy Inter away from home when they were a big deal. How he was applauded off at so many grounds. His ability to score twenty goals and assist 20. My fave ever stat where he’d had the most shots on target in the league as well as the most off target.

He was sophistication personified. A French James Bond. An on pitch artist. A gentleman, a hero… everything you dream of in a player. When he left to go to Barca, I was fine with it. He’d given me so much. He was never going to win the Champions League with us. He went over there and smashed it in an unfavoured position.

He always pined for his true love… Arsenal. They don’t make em’ like that anymore. I wonder if we’ll ever see superstar class like that again? Will we ever have a 20 goal a season striker who can deliver that consistently? I doubt it. But one can dream. He was a one off. An enigma. A player I can say I had the total pleasure of seeing live so many times. One of the greatest priviliges I’ve been afforded through my season ticket.

Hopefully there will be a place for him at the club. He’d make an incredibly relevant ambassador. He could be our Zidane. Who wouldn’t want to join after meeting the king? He’s a student of the game, I’m sure he’d make a fantastic scout as well. There has to be a role for him at the club at some point. I’d imagine it’ll be post Wenger.

I’m looking forward to seeing him on Sky. It’ll be great to have a bit of Arsenal representation. It’ll also be cool to listen to a forwards opinion.



375 Responses to “The King retires, but he’ll be back…”

Jump to comment form ↓

  1. Inter YourGran

    Afternoon all,

    This will be a good test on the weekend against a liverpool side trying to play there way into form. If we can start at a high tempo to match them and put them on the back foot, we can get a result. The defence will be interesting and we really are sweating on Oxlade-Chamberlain’s fitness a bit. Outside Sterling, who i expect will line up as the front man, they offer very little threat outside of set pieces. If we can congest the middle of the park and keep the ball forcing them to play it more direct we can win this comfortably.


    chambers debuchy mertesacker gibbs


    sanchez oxo-chambo cazorla welbeck


    becnh; martinez/ospina, monreal, bellerin, maitland-niles, walcott, podolski, campbell/sanogo

  2. Highbury Daze

    People who love and support Arsenal are not required to love the manager, in fact the opposite is the case in lots of clubs, fans show displeasure in many ways, protesting at the ground is the main one when they are dissatisfied with a managers performance, would you not think it strange that fans would accept 4th every year and not say something, anything, are they that fucking brain dead, that hypnotised by this guy

  3. Zementalstrength

    “He’s more of an Alexis Sanchez when he plays as a striker… ”

    Brenda Rodgers comparing Alexis with… Sterling lolololololol

  4. Zementalstrength

    “People who love and support Arsenal are not required to love the manager…”

    Excepted all the AKB’s of course lol

  5. Highbury Daze

    Is it not an indictment on the weak managerial performance of Venger that we have to continually play LB and RB as CD because we have ONLY TWO AT THE CLUB, this is a capital offence, it is criminal negligence, 2 centre backs in the club and dumb pricks are singing Venger’s name, I say to those fuck you all

  6. Highbury Daze

    In order to do any job one needs the right tools to perform at his/her best, AFC are being denied the tools to compete properly, 2 CB 6 defenders in the first team squad, it got that bad Venger had to draft Hayden and Bellerin into the online site to save further embarrassment when this was pointed out

    We still have only 6 1st team defenders and Kos is out for God knows how long, a 9 month long season, Per is playing from memory, we have Arteta out no real CDM, and the dummies keep singing this imposters name

  7. Highbury Daze

    When this fraud finally leaves, they will write a book on how not to manage a billion pound football club, it will point out the flaws of introducing a socialist wage structure in a capitalist society, it will highlight the blatant waste of over 20 million pounds on keeping perennial injured players on the books and paying them 60k a week

    It will go behind the scenes of a fractured injury plagued club, and try to resolve this phenomenon

    It will strongly advise against one man becoming bigger than the club, and point out that a dictator is not the way to go and that delegation is the way to proceed, each man/woman having a prescribed task

    That is just the preface

  8. Bamford10


    Ouch. The c-word already — so early in the day. Shameful, really, given where we are in the calendar.

    Where is that Yuletide spirit? What of ‘Peace on earth, goodwill towards men’?

    I, for one, have resolved to be kinder to all, even those who support/defend Mr. Wenger. Kinder, even, to Mr. Wenger himself. At least through the end of the holiday season (or in the very least, the end of the day).

    Thus in that spirit, good tidings to all.

    Did anyone see the fresh rumors that we’re looking at Van Dijk? He and Krychowiak would go well beneath the tree.

    Third place is the new first place trophy, I think. This year at least. At least we can hope to pip United.

  9. Bamford10

    Good story on Klopp saying he’ll miss the Dortmund fans — who paid tribute to him in song last night — when he eventually leaves.

    “This was the last home game [before the winter break],” Klopp told a news conference. “And there might come a time in my life when I am no longer the coach of this team. But what I know already is that I will miss them.

    “It’s just extraordinary what the fans do here. That’s just fantastic. There are several stadiums with a great atmosphere in the world, but only a few who go wild like that when you are 16th.”

    Over the last few weeks, Klopp has dropped hints that his time at the Westfalenstadion may soon come to an end. In October 2013, the Dortmund boss signed a new contract which runs until 2018.

    This man would breathe new life into Arsenal.

  10. kwik fit

    Pedro’s on a Bender! Unfortunately not the pair of German DM’s that we crave but an alcohol fuelled rat arsed , shag any one in trousers type 🙂

  11. Highbury Daze

    What was it last season, 5-1, what are the odds we play the same game plan we used then, Suarez is gone so I’m going for a 3-2 loss, see you at the station, airport, bus stop, wherever they are

    Oh and don’t forget the thanks for the memories banner

  12. Bristles

    “Did anyone see the fresh rumors that we’re looking at Van Dijk?”

    Sadly the only Van Dijk we’re likely to see this Christmas is Dick rather than Virgil, singing Chim Chimernee up on a f*cking rooftop…

  13. Bamford10

    There’s a chance that Ozil — who may return to training in next few weeks — will return to us with renewed love for the game, renewed spirit, renewed purpose. For those of us who know his game has not been what it once was, this is a promising sign. See his recent comments re his impatience to return to the pitch, such as:

    “After a time, you really miss playing football. You miss the ball and just want to play. When you watch the games and think that you could have been playing, and playing well, it makes you miss it, but that’s the way things are.”

    Ozil 3.0 in the new year.

  14. Highbury Daze

    Venger is aloof, he would not talk to fans, it is all this reptile can do to shake hands with the opposition manager after the game, he scurries away like a frightened school boy, this is an anti social creature, shares a drink with himself, sad case

  15. Highbury Daze

    There isn’t a manager in the league who hasn’t had a run in with this tosser, fighting on the touchline refusing to shake hands, this is England you lousy French fuck, show some courtesy you fucking hillbilly

    For an educated man you are short on manners

  16. Bamford10

    While I know there are very few fans of Jack on here, I still believe he could offer us something if we’re played deeper, in place of Arteta or Flamini.

    Despite his weaknesses, I think he’s better than either of those two, and who knows when Wenger will get around to signing a genuine CDM. With Ozil and Jack back, we might look like the following in February:

    Debu Mert DIJK Gibb
    Ramsey Ozil3.0
    Oxlade Welbeck Sanchez

    That’s actually a decent side. Could even see us surprising a top team.

  17. Highbury Daze

    Bamford, no Giroud, he is the first man picked in a Venger team if fit, it’s Welbeck pushed wide left or right to accommodate Venger’s favourites

  18. Highbury Daze

    I’m afraid that there would be no place in my team for Jack, I know Venger would squeeze him in somewhere at another’s expense, when fit

  19. Zementalstrength

    “Did anyone see the fresh rumors that we’re looking at Van Dijk?”

    No, but we’re after Kim Kallstrom, so don’t worry.

  20. Ozy

    Debu Mert DIJK Gibb
    Ramsey Ozil3.0
    Oxlade Welbeck Sanchez

    That team would get absolutely hammered by any half decent side. Wilshere playing deep? Dijk? That very, very average Celtic CB? Welbeck as the striker? Oxlade? Uhm.

  21. Cesc Appeal

    Think Howedes is the most likely defensive signing in January.

    Howedes and Krychowiak would do me nicely. The Pole is getting some rave reviews, considering he moved from Stade Reims for £4 Million this summer…missed that one didn’t we in a sea of “impossible” moves and “no one is available.”

    Debs, Mert/How, Kozz, Gibbs
    Krychowiak, Ramsey
    Walcott*, Ozil, Sanchez

    *Or easily could make a case for Oxlade, Welbeck or even Cazorla in current form.

  22. Zementalstrength

    “Ozil is already back in training I thought. Next two weeks he should be approaching fitness to play again.”

    Just in time to help us to reach the 4th spot, what a relief!! lol

  23. Cesc Appeal


    I agree.

    I really don’t see how Wilshere fits into this side. That middle would get bullied.

    Be reliant on Ramsey being in form and Sanchez doing all the donkey work, getting back and helping. Wilshere, Walcott and Ozil all have very disinterested attitudes.

  24. Cesc Appeal


    Oh no doubt it’s UCL for us. Depends what United do in January, if they don’t make any defensive signings we’ll come 3rd, if they do 4th.

    This side should be able to trot into fourth at a canter. Who’s opposing us? Spurs? Liverpool?

  25. N5

    Just reading the Southampton vs Sheffield report and it mentions Southampton losing 5 games in a row. I like Southampton and feel for them, but you’d have to be a reactionary bellend with no football knowledge whatsoever to consider that they would have finished in the top 4 this year.

  26. Bamford10


    Sorry, mate, but that’s the best side we can build at moment. Still down on Ox? Silly. Despite inconsistency, he’s been quite good. You’re literally the only person on the planet who would say otherwise. Van Dijk average? Pure ignorance. Welbeck? What, Giroud is better? Fine, plug Giroud in if you like.

    Point is we’re working with limited personnel and this, in my view, is the best XI we could field, IMO, under the circumstances.

    Far from ideal and far from Madrid, but we are what we are at moment.

    My XI only requires a 10m spend in the window. Please show us your best XI (given no more than a 10m spend).

    And btw, Jack has looked quite good playing deep, as nearly the whole world recognizes. What, Arteta and Flamini are preferable? Please.

  27. Zementalstrength

    It will be an amazing achievement to finish in the top 4 this season again.
    I don’t really know what else to say…

  28. gambon

    Ozil talking like he’s all excited to be back, watch what happens when he gets on the pitch.

    It will be back to the sluggish, lacklustre performances we saw before.

    You can refine your skills, learn and adapt but what you cant do is change attitude. It happens so rarely.

  29. gambon

    Have to say I agree with Ozy

    thats not a remotely strong side.

    We are at least 5 first team players away from competing with Chelsea, and without a new manager we never will anyway regardless of who we sign.

    I read today that in our last 15 games against UTD, Chelsea and City we have won 0, lost 9 and drawn 12.

    Absolutely astonishing.

  30. Bamford10


    Yeah, “that middle would get bullied,” so what, plug ARTETA in there? Flamini?


    Were it up to me, we’d sign Krychowiak, or Schneiderlin, or Bender,. but what are the odds this is going to happen? Slim.

    So who would you play deep? Arteta, Flamini or Jack?

    The notion that the first two are somehow far better choices than Jack is, frankly, ridiculous. Neither would start for the English team (were they English).

    Again, I’d prefer other personnel as well, but under the circumstances, what is the best XI?

  31. Hitchy


    I think we will see a few good performances from Ozil when he gets back from injury.
    Most of the times he was getting berated was because he was physically fucked – which is unsurprising as he got over-played.
    He’s in a tricky situation because if he comes back in is top form, he will be overplayed yet again and then struggle.

    Its a classic case of Wenger mismanaging a situation

  32. Bamford10


    But I wasn’t really saying it was a “strong” side, certainly not in absolute terms. I was simply saying that, for me, that would be the best XI under the circumstances.

    What XI would you all field with no more than a 10m spend in January? Just curious.

  33. Bamford10


    Well one, because one must be realistic. Recall what Wenger did last January? Kallstrom is what he did.

    I’d be happy to tell you what I’d do with a 30m spend, namely replace Jack in the XI above with Krychowiak or Schneiderlin, but that was the limitation I was working with.

    Cheers, btw.

  34. Cesc Appeal


    I wouldn’t want to watch what would happen to an Arsenal midfield where Wilshere was the “muscle” or the shield.

    I can already envisage counter attacks where our middle is totally empty because Wilshere is having a lay down somewhere.

    I agree neither Arteta or Flamini are in anyway, shape or form good enough, you would have found me banging that drum tirelessly all summer. I said we threw in the towel on having any sort of ambition when we didn’t sign a CDM.

    But they are both still preferable to having Wilshere there.

  35. salparadisenyc

    No predicting Wenger, especially in January. January of 2009 with defensive issues similar to our current state he brought AA23 in at midnight of the deadline. I wouldn’t be the slightest bit surprised to see Draxler come in after just achieving fitness with our defensive numbers.

    Flip side of that is Kallstrom or nobody.

  36. Cesc Appeal


    Yeah I think so too.

    I can see Van Gaal adding a quality defender in January. Maybe even another CM come CDM. Bit of height and physical presence in the middle. I like Blind, but he’s a utility player at best from the bench for a side like United.

    No mid-week commitments, if they get their shit together they could be making a late challenge for the title I think.

    Have a feeling 1, 2 and 3 will be close if United spend wisely in January. Then they’ll be a large drop off to fourth (us) and Spurs or Liverpool a few points behind.

  37. Cesc Appeal

    United would probably be wise to take a look at Howedes. Can play across the whole back line, good height, good strength as well.

    Still not sold on Rojo, I like him as a LB (or what I saw from him at the WC anyway) and Shaw’s form is a bit all over the place. If I’m honest I think United need a RB and 2xCB’s, Rojo at LB for me.

  38. N5

    Agreed Cesc. I can see at least one WC defender joining them. For whatever reason, I can see it being Hummels. I agree he isn’t the best CB in the world, but the way he commands would make any defence a more solid unit (incidently, I think that will be the nail in the Klopp coffin). I think they will buy a full back too and as you said, a CDM/CM.

    If he gets it right, without midweek interuption, Manure should do well.

  39. jwl

    N5 I still keep in touch with two Saints supporters. they are good friends of mine, and they have convinced themselves Saints can finish fourth if everything goes their way. I’ve been getting plenty snarky emails about Chavs,ManCity and ManUre top 3, Arsenal continue to play like clowns and then fourth is up for grabs. Arsenal making it interesting for supporters of other teams, if Arsenal don’t get their act together soon, there will be plenty of talk of other teams finishing fourth.

  40. Cesc Appeal


    Yeah, Clyne, Hummels and Strootman would be great for United.

    De Gea
    Clyne, Hummels, Rojo, Shaw
    Strootman, Herrera

    That should be a pretty solid set up.

  41. Le Prof


    ‘Oh and don’t forget the thanks for the memories banner’

    Why don’t you take it yourself? Oh thats right you never go and probably never have been.

    And why dont you give it a rest you mug and change the fucking record?

  42. BacaryisGone

    I’m afraid the best we can hope for in January is a loan signing at central defender. I’m 100% certain that after the Welbeck signing, Arsene has decided that that’s it as far as permanent signings go until the summer.

    I don’t agree with it, but that’s the way it’s going to be.

  43. Emiratesstroller

    The bottom line is that Arsenal need at least one Centre Back in the January transfer window.

    It is unrealistic to expect Mertesacker to carry the burden alone and play alongside Chambers, Debuchy or Monreal when Koscielny is unfit. You may get away with it in less demanding fixtures, but not against top teams.

    My view is that Wenger is likely to look at moment for a squad rather than an
    automatic first choice player, because there are currently few such players of
    quality currently available.

    Most of the decent Centre Backs are CL cup tied or with clubs seeking that qualification. That is likely to exclude Hummels, Howedes or Schar.

    Pedro suggests that Reid is the answer despite the absurd price being quoted
    by their manager for a player whose contract expires in summer. That may be
    in actual fact the best option for Arsenal if as is being suggested they would like to buy Jenkinson. Selling this player and adding perhaps another £2 million on top might be a deal worth considering even if he came free in the summer.

    Otherwise I don’t see Wenger doing any business in January. Where is he going to play new players? As it is Wenger will need to offload at least 2 players
    in his current squad because he can only register 25 players for CL and as everyone knows Giroud is currently unregistered!