Thierry Henry will go down as one of the best strikers in Premier League history.
He is Arsenal ’s record goal-scorer, won two Premier League titles and changed the face of the English game with his pace, power and spectacular goals.
World Cup winner Henry enjoyed wonderful success at Arsenal, but it was in the 2001/02 season when he really took the Premier League by storm.
Henry scored an incredible 24 goals in 33 games as Arsenal stormed to the Double, their second under Arsene Wenger.
But one of the biggest reasons that Henry became such a hit with Arsenal fans was the way he connected with the supporters.
He was one of the first big-name foreign signings to understand the local rivalry with Tottenham and that was bigger for old-school supporters than any title rival, taking particular pride in not losing a North London derby.
He went from joking that he feared his wayward shots would hit the old clock at Highbury to being the deadliest marksman in English football.
Here, different voices, team-mates, managers and pundits talk about Henry – one of the true greats of the Premier League.
Former Arsenal striker Alan Smith:
“If you pushed me between Dennis Bergkamp and Henry, obviously totally different players, but I’d go for Thierry Henry for the volume of goals, different goals and the way that he scored them.
“I think he’s the best player to have played in this country. I’d go that far. You can’t compare defenders to attackers, but he’s definitely the best striker, for a few years there he was unplayable.
“I loved Dennis, loved the way he went about his game, his dedication on the training ground, to hone his technique and he was an example to everybody. But I’d still go for Thierry Henry because, and I know it’s a cliche, but the hardest thing is to stick the ball in the back of the net.
“He was magnificent at it. Great technique and a fantastic athlete as well – strong, powerful and Arsenal’s record goalscorer.”
Former Liverpool star John Barnes:
“It is about his power, strength and determination. It is the mental strength of these guys which really makes them the best players of their type in the world. They have incredible desire and mental toughness.”
Former Arsenal defender and member of the Invincibles Lauren:
“What happened to Thierry Henry was that he wanted to be the best player every single day of his life. In training, the FA Cup, Premier League, League Cup and the Champions League.
“He had incredible power and pace, will-to-win and determination. He could run at defenders and score incredible goals. He would lift the rest of the team.”
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger:
“He had the power and physique of a boxer – brilliant goals and incredible talent. We tried to sign him before he went to Juventus, we stayed in touch and on the case.
“Then when the opportunity came up to sign him second time around then we were able to get him. He made a huge impact on English football. His record will be difficult for anybody to beat.”
Ex-Arsenal and Barcelona midfielder Cesc Fabregas, on the best he has played with:
“Thierry Henry, Andres Iniesta, Xavi, Fernando Torres, David Villa, it’s so difficult to say one.
“But I’ll go for Thierry Henry, when I was at Arsenal he was there at his very best. He was a beast and he was fantastic. I learned so much from him.”