Wenger opens up on Henry exit

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Arsene Wenger says that Thierry Henry’s media duties with Sky left him in an uncomfortable position when it came to coaching Arsenal’s youngsters.

The club’s record scorer had been offered a full-time role working with the Gunners under-18 side at the start of the summer only to up leave the club when he informed the boss he wouldn’t be turning his back on his punditry with Sky Sports. The 39-year-old has since accepted a role with the Belgian national team.

Speaking to the Arsenal Magazine about the importance of having former players around the training ground – a topic that the likes of Emmanuel Petit and Patrick Vieira have touched on recently – Wenger made clear he too firmly believes in the positive influence of having the club’s identity passed from generation to generation.

“Well, when you have an opportunity to give our former players a role at the club, they know Arsenal is about identity,” said Wenger.

“Identity is about values and the players who have played at the club for a long time know the values are important, not only on the playing side but on the moral side, so they can carry through the generations.

“It is important for this club and the history of this club.”

On Henry’s decision to leave Arsenal this summer, he added: “There was a lot of debate about Thierry Henry not staying here. I think Thierry Henry has done an exceptional job here but it is an uncomfortable position for him.

“He agreed that it was not easy for him to deal with talking about Arsenal during the weekend and then coming in. You want him to be free from his statements and it’s always difficult for him to be really objective sometimes, and even a bit harsh, and then come in and face the players.

“It will be easier for him and I’m sure that he will come back into coaching later.”

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Perry S.
Perry S.

former (unappreciative) players take swipes at him and yet he still responds with utter class. stand up guy, that arsene.

Lettra
Lettra

Class act .. frustrating as F*ck at times and stubborn as a mule.
But the man has so many admirable qualities that i have never seen among our rivals.

Ken
Ken

You can’t have your cake and eat it too and you can’t sleep on two beds at the same time.. Henry wanted to do both its just not possible. Especially if you’re trying to be fully committed and maintain a certain level of integrity at your job you just can’t. Those other ex players complaining Petit and Co are just bitter there’s a reason for everything and I’m sure Arsene is not telling us the full story especially with Viera because if he did it’ll cause a lot of damage he’s a smart man call him whatever you want but he’s a man of class integrity maturity intelligence and uncompromising discipline when it comes to certain issues you can almost be certain 80 to 90% of the time it won’t be wengers fault and there would be a solid reason for certain decisions that are being made behind the scenes that we’re not aware of when it comes to these ex players. The Viera situation is interesting but them ganging up against Wenger to make him look bad in a moment when his approval rating is at an all time low with fans is just like kicking a man when he’s down. It’s not like he never offered them jobs they AL turned it down for money except for Bergkamp his situation is peculiar in that he doesn’t like traveling and Ajax is at the comfort of his home. He also never shut the door on them. They can always come in the future but Petit played that wrong and I’m sure he’s just bitter

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia
Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

Agree, this communication is a class act from Wenger but he should have done it right away after he withdrew the offer from Henry. Now, Henry hasn’t been commenting Arsenal youth on Skysports. He will have to comment Lukaku’s performance with Everton and meet him the following week with the national team. At one point, it’s got to be deemed acceptable.

moonie
moonie

what?

Wallab
Wallab

Very good answer! A few of these former players have coaching jobs because of Wenger’s recommendation, but still bad mouth him? Makes no sense! Maybe when they grow up more they will appreciate what their mentor did for them.

Anonymarse
Anonymarse

I’ve never seen 400+ thumbs up before

gunn cabinet
gunn cabinet

you should have seen what happened when somebody typed “mourinho is a cunt” in the comments section some while back; there was an arseblog meltdown…

Frank Bascombe
Frank Bascombe

Well he is.

ramgooner
ramgooner

Wenger is Bergkamp.Bergkamp is Wenger.I’ll leave it there.

NorthernGooner
NorthernGooner

I wish you wouldn’t.

Too Drunk To Be Offside
Too Drunk To Be Offside

Well said bro … I have had issues with Wenger’s tactics and results over the past few season. Have felt not enough development was being done to make Arsenal title contenders again.

However what I or frankly anyone cannot dispute is that Wenger is a class act when it comes to his professional conduct.

MrBrain + Ozil's vision
MrBrain + Ozil's vision

I’ve never witnessed more than 800 thumbs up on this forum before. Wow!

Perry S.
Perry S.

I’m blown away I got that many. to be honest, with all the discourse amongst supporters, I thought I’d get a lot of the reverse. good on the supporters to put aside their angst for a moment to appreciate the professionalism of the boss.

Jonny Bravo
Jonny Bravo

You would imagine with so many of their top players playing in the EPL, that Henry would be in an even more un-com-fortable position in respect of the Belgium national team.

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia
Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

Totally agree.

YoungArse
YoungArse

Doesn’t sound as dramatic or cynical as the press made out.

Shock.

Block 93
Block 93

Hope the door is open for Nicolas Bendtner to return home to educate the Arsenal Yute

Galileo
Galileo

Lol! Very mischievous “Block”head. Love you dude!!

Delford Magaya
Delford Magaya

You have to look at the character of players first. Do you think Berdner can be a coach?

Arsman

lord bendtner can do anythin he wants

Fletcher
Fletcher

Haha…A man who drives a Mercedes while playing for a volkswagen can definitely do anything.

Fletcher
Fletcher

Haha…A man who drives a Mercedes while playing for a volkswagen team can definitely do anything.

JB
JB

@Deflord Sarcasm young squire…. Embrace it

Anonymarse
Anonymarse

He could show them what not to do …

Marc Powell
Marc Powell

What Venger means is he doesn’t want anyone critising him …even if it is stating the obvious. So he made Thierry leave.

Paul
Paul

Are you trying for 400 thumbs down Marc?

NorthernGooner
NorthernGooner

Kin El pal, don’t start criticising Wenger on these boards, there’ll be a witch Hunt out and you’ll be bullied by thumbs down.

Eternal Optimist
Eternal Optimist

It’s not about not criticising Wenger. Everyone on these boards (including Blogs) has criticised Wenger from time to time, especially when it comes to his stubborn ways. The point being that when you criticise someone, it has to be both justified and educated.

For example, the above comment about Wenger not wanting anyone to criticise him. Even assuming that’s true, does any manager want his staff criticising him? You think Mourinho wouldn’t want his coach to leave if he criticised him on TV?
Forget that, imagine if you’re a CEO of a company. Would you want to keep a manager who criticses you openly?

NorthernGoon
NorthernGoon

You make a good point at least with the latter half of your reply though I wasn’t specifically referring to open criticism. Le Prof has long been accused of wanting ‘Yes’ men around him not because he’s any kind of narcissist but because he doesn’t like people arguing with him behind closed doors as well. One particular example is at the beginning of Steve Bould’s current role or was it at the end of his first season I forget.

The opening sentence however is a bit or maybe a lot of tosh. A large portion of people on these talky bits are vehemently pro-Wenger and for at least the last few years have refused to hear any criticism at all aimed at the boss even when it’s been warranted. Don’t get me wrong we’ve had some who’ll do the opposite as well and will shout down any defense of Arsene as being sycophancy. As for Blogs, even though I’ve not always agreed with him he’s generally been fair in his summary and support (or the opposite) when it comes to the boss. He’s certainly not one of them I’d accuse of being ridiculous.

The Night Elf
The Night Elf

Nicely done Arsene!

AndiArse
AndiArse

This Radebe chap is something really to be honest. And then we wonder why so many former players say they looked to him as almost a father figure?! Blimey I want him to be my dad!

AndiArse
AndiArse

And the firkin autocorrect changes it to the former Leeds captain! Arsene Arsene Arsene! Fuck apple and anyone who thought autocorrect is a “cool” standard feature on a phone!

Eddie
Eddie

Really,…from Arsene to Radebe,…?

Unyoke The Ox
Unyoke The Ox

Thought we had the former Leeds defender, Lucas Radebe, working for us for a second there.

Lee
Lee

What makes the negative comments from former players more bizarre is how often some legends of Arsenal (Pires) and even Beckham come to train with our boys. I can’t for the life of me see Arsene saying no to any former player if they approach him and ask for a role, he doesn’t seem like that kind of guy. He wants complete and utter devotion to our club, and when some aren’t willing to give it, he deems it not good enough, which I appreciate. Henry was given a choice, and he made his, so it is what it is.

Goonertom
Goonertom

I dont even think its a question of absolute devotion. Its just a matter of professionalism.
Henry represented a conflict of interest, on the one hand he had a job which includes objectively criticizing the club when necessary in the public eye. On the other hand he has to try and instill a culture and values as well as technical knowledge to younger players. Its pretty obvious that there’s a conflict there and i dont think it has to be viewed as something negative, its just common sense you do one or the other. You would see the same approach if it happened in any other business or organisation. Football is no different.

Arsene is allowing ex-player coaches to have other roles away from the club, all he requires is that they dont conflict and that their job coaching at arsenal is not negatively affected by it, which is what ANY sane business manager would ask from an employee.

something cool
something cool

“objectively criticizing”

How can one talk objectively when sitting with that Owen twat

Possession
Possession

Can’t think why Peter Storey didn’t return in a full coaching role….
I jest.
No pulling out of tackles though !!

Johar
Johar

Maybe because he was in a nick somewhere.

Xhaka Kan
Xhaka Kan

Where’s Gilles Grimandi anyway?

Unnecessarilystupid
Unnecessarilystupid

Somewhere in France scouting and shit…

ndkbse
ndkbse

He’s in the legends squad for Saturday!

die hard gooner

It was not compatible working at sky and at arsenal and it was never going to be. OT spuds signed sissoko for 30 mil hahaha. I have my issues with wenger but he never screws up big money buys. sissoko is a bang average player. They sign him and lamela for 30 mil each while we get Alexis and Granit for a similar amount. Hahaha is all that I can say.

Gooner96
Gooner96

And they can’t take it when we finish above them, Hahahaaaaaaaa

Al Gilmore
Al Gilmore

Boss is right – as he usually is.

People who criticise need to put themselves in his position. Whether Henry’s criticisms of Arsenal are right or wrong on Sky, it is incongruous to then come in an work for them the next. Very few of us would be allowed to criticise our employers in the media and expect to remain employed.

As ever this issue has been turned against Wenger by fans who are determined to criticise his every decision and a media that wants to fan the flames of that discontent

Tom Gun
Tom Gun

“always difficult for him to be really objective sometimes, and even a bit harsh, and then come in and face the players.”

Reading between the lines, do you think there was a confrontation with one or some of the players, probably Giroud? I imagine Giroud will have always looked up to Henry and those comments last season would have hurt him. Then seeing Henry at Colney…

Johar
Johar

Arsene never publicly criticises players so it may well be that it was AW who thought what Henry said about Giroud was out of order.

lonsdale
lonsdale

I mean, it’s a no brainer that Giroud would look up to him, as he’s one of the best French players ever. He wears the number 12 too (Thierry’s national team number).

Whether there was a confrontation or not, I’m pretty certain any of us would be pretty disheartened hearing one of our idols saying “You’re not good enough”

Mez
Mez

So seriously we are expected to believe that Viera, Petit, Henry, Bergkamp to name just 4 have all had conflicting interests above taking any form of role with the club.

Utter nonsense – they were all players that were vocal about the way the club was going (Bergkamp being an exception to my knowledge).
Strange how Henry cannot make the legends game due to his Belgian commitments – they play tonight and not again for a whole week – does he really not have time to pop on a plane for a few hours at the club that made him, a club he loves – or is Wenger merely not willing to have anyone criticize him.
You can say that isn’t the case but why wasn’t Wrighty apparoached – again probably because he has spoken against Wenger.

Sideshow _bob
Sideshow _bob

Classy as ever from Arsene. Honestly there was no story here. Even Henry admitted it, no hard feelings. Its media who tried to create something out of nothing
Btw Chelsea resigning Luizzzz is the best thing that’s happened this summer. Really thgt they got away when they sold him for 50m, guess not. Sideshow Bob is backkk ??

Wangge
Wangge

Classy as ever.

I’d love to be mentored by Arsène.

toma
toma

King in the north must leave castleblack and occupy kings landing.shouldn’t be long now I imagine.

Eddie
Eddie

The real ass is the Chelsea guy Petit. He’s definitely bitter about something. And because of how the fans were so bitter with Arsene a week or so ago, he thought a good idea to also take a pop. In the process he has embarrassed his mates too, Viera in particular

Gooner 4 Life

What’s his excuse for Viera then. Why didn’t Viera get the chance to return and help the youth? He was’nt a pundit.

arseblog
Admin

What has Vieira done to suggest he’s a coach worth having around? Also why, if he’s managing an MLS team, would he come to Arsenal and coach kids?

Joe I
Joe I

I think former players go to other clubs just to perform in roles with bigger responsablities, similar to players going out on loan because there is just no space for them at the senior squad to develop. Some will come back when the opportunity arises and some will stay elsewhere in search of their personal growth. viera going to coach an MLS team or Arteta being assistant to Guardiola for example are both roles that put them in very good positions to come back to arsenal either when Bouldy or Arsene himself retire… I’d really like someone like Arteta to get the managing role at Arsenal when the time comes… I can always find many “buts” when looking for Arsene’s replacement in established managers… Fellow gooners, who would you like to take the role?

Sam
Sam

Wenger has completely lost the ideas taking the right decision at the right time and that has make him vulnerable in his job. He is just trying to be protected rather than doing the right thing to protect his integrity.

MrBrain + Ozil's vision
MrBrain + Ozil's vision

And what do you thin must do?

MrBrain + Ozil's vision
MrBrain + Ozil's vision

And what do you think is the right thing he must do?… f**k auto correct the first time*

Gerard Monen
Gerard Monen

Wait and see, we look slot stronger on paper Although I would have liked to have Koulibaly at the back,He is Viera mark 2

Dr. Phil

Vieira and Petit’s problem? Statue envy.

DS
DS

Good to see gooners giving Arsene some love on here.

Let’s face it, the media is always out to cripple us and this stubborn old git deals with it on a daily basis. I’m a stubborn man and I’m sure most of you lot are – he has his principles and sticks with them. The day we find a manager to replace him that loves this club even half as much As he does will be a good day!

Til then COYG!

Xi_gunner
Xi_gunner

Wenger doesn’t accept criticism?

What a farce!

Give me a name in World football that gets hacked more than Wenger for as long as he has endured it.

Abdolute poppycock.

santori
santori

Its not a god given right that just because you are an ex (great) player that you automatically become a good manager.

More often than not, it isn’t the case.

If you are going to be involved full heartedly in something, there should not be any distractions or other affairs that may compromise your decision making/relations within the club.

Its simple.

Either commit full heartedly or not.

Roberto Martinez lauded by some derange people and the press as the messiah that should take over from Wenger (not too long ago) was a press pundit and manager.

I could never understand what people saw in him. Mainly he was relegation troubled, had one good season, but that’s it.

a
a

Arsene for Prime minister and President of the world.

NorthernGooner
NorthernGooner

I like Le Prof I do but the sycophants on here astound me. He’s far from perfect and more often than not recently has seemed bereft of any clue. However, he is ours and I’d rather him than Maureen.

Henry has always been bang on the money when it comes to Arsenal and Wenger simply doesn’t like people disagree with him. This isn’t anything new either.

NYGunner

Not all players make great coaches. Often times the qualities that make a great player are a detriment as a coach/manager. Few make the transition at the highest level. I have a sneaking feeling that Arteta, of all our former players, might end up being the best of the bunch.

On a related note, it’s going to be interesting seeing Zidane have a full season at the helm in Madrid.

CechMate
CechMate

If I have to choose a guy from football to be a role model for my kid, it’d be Wenger! At a time, when all is pardoned so far as you win, this guy manages to hold his values aloft! I’ve been frustrated with him for not winning, for not buying players, for employing wrong tactics but I’d anyday prefer a statue of him outside Emirates than Mou or even Pep for that matter. I’ve seen managers splurge money to save their careers, leave their clubs cos they didn’t get their transfer targets, go on a rant against everyone cos they want to save their jobs (honestly, it was fun to watch last season) but this is a guy with class – he doesn’t splurge money just bcos he can, he doesn’t complain about others in his club, doesn’t pull up players in public. Unfortunately, times have changed and his ways have become his issues – he is plotting his own downfall!

Eternal Optimist
Eternal Optimist

Lots of criticism about Wenger not affirding ex-players opportunities to work at the club? Please remind us who the assistant manager is.

Eternal Optimist
Eternal Optimist

*affording 😛

MrBrain + Ozil's vision
MrBrain + Ozil's vision

Okay, correct me if i’m wrong. Among the top 10 Clubs in England, Wenger still ranks as no1 or joint top with Manchester United in terms of recruitments of ex-players to work with him. If so, then petit is just a poppycock!

In any case, anyone who had worn that dirty blue Jersey from the other side of London will always remain a c*nt! And Petit is no exception.

I Rony
I Rony

Cech?

Santi's left foot
Santi's left foot

Wasn’t blue though, was it! More like green, yellow… but not blue.

Amir
Amir

Lets not forget John Terry is a Cunt!