Thierry Henry is great; no one’s going to deny that. The New York Red Bulls captain is the embodiment of success. He’s won everything there is to win with country and club.
However, there’s something the French legend hasn’t gotten his hands on; the MLS Cup. The 36-year-old has played in four professional leagues, and the MLS is the only league he’s failed to win the title.
The three-time All-Star has been an amazing signing for the Red Bulls organization, scoring 44 goals and adding 33 assists in 104 regular season appearances. He’s led the team to the playoffs for four consecutive seasons. And in 2013, he helped New York capture its first silverware in club history.
However, Arsenal’s all-time leading scorer is in the fifth and final year of his contract, but hasn’t secured the golden prize. This could be the final season of his illustrious career and the World Cup winner is itching to secure the elusive title that he admitted to be very hard to win.
According to prosoccertalk’s Noah Davis, Henry told SI’s Grant Wahl “It’s harder. Way harder…. (In Europe) I didn’t have to tell (ex-Arsenal and France teammates) Robert Pires or Patrick Viera what to do, so I was concentrating on what I had to do. I’m not having a go at anyone; I’m just saying that it’s easier to have guys who know exactly what it takes.”
With the parity in the rapidly growing MLS, it’s understandable that it’ll be tougher to win the championship, but Henry has to share some of the blame with his teammates ‒ actually.
The lethal scorer disappears in the playoffs. In eight postseason games, Henry has scored only one goal.
After winning the Supporters Shield last season, Henry and his teammates were favorites to win it all, but they failed in their first series against the Houston Dynamo. The ex-Barcelona star started both games but only recorded an assist.
That’s all in the past. Now, Henry is focusing on finally delivering for the fans. It’s been reported that he said, “It would mean the world to me (to win MLS Cup), and even more so for the fans that have been waiting for a long time here.”
Even though the Red Bulls don’t have all the required personnel to be a power house and have struggled this season, there’s a feeling that this is the year the organization has to secure its first MLS Cup. This could be Henry’s last season and raising the trophy would be the perfect exclamation point for the fans, the player and the organization that was able bring one of the greatest players to the MLS.
However, Henry does not care for the idea that the legend has to go out on top.
“I don’t agree with the ‘finishing on a high note’ kind of thing,” he said. “If you can finish on a high note, so be it. Like I said, it would mean the world to me if we could win it, but afterwards, I would be able to look at my career and obviously, if I can add a trophy, it would be more than amazing – trust me. But I think a player can go and relax if he put some trophies overall in his career.”
Even if he’s isn’t that concerned with the way his career ends, it matters to New York’s fans that their greatest acquisition guides them to the promise land.
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