so adieu thierry

Well it’s finally happened; Thierry Henry’s buggered off to Barcelona at long last. I heard a lot of Arsenal fans commenting on the radio yesterday about how surprising, even shocking the news was – but surely this was a move destined to happen. For one thing it’s been a courtship resurrected every summer for the last 5 years. I think most people regarded that as just a tactic to earn TH a regular pay rise. But by his own standards he had such a shocking last season. He seemed disaffected by the move to the Emirates, the captaincy seemed to rest heavily on his shoulders (Silva looked far more comfortable in the role), his team mates appeared almost as intimidated by him as his opponents, his injuries became more of an issue as his relationship with Wenger broke down, David Dein’s departure unsettled him more than it ought to have, he started commenting on the lack of ambition being shown by Arsenal in the transfer market, and he developed a sulk which manifested itself in petulant performances on the pitch. He’s such a gifted player – one of the best the Premiership has seen but I’m sure Wenger knew that last season was a tipping point and now was the time to cash in on a player past his best, just like Vierra before him. It’s smart business by Wenger as usual.

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