Hail the legend!
Freshly returned from his Dubai vacation, where he also got the chance to meet his childhood idol, Diego Maradona, Robin van Persie has given his opinion on Thierry Henry and his return on loan to Arsenal. The following is from the Daily Mail:
Some people might ask why he chose to come back, because he is already a legend here. For me, it tells you everything about him; Thierry is coming back because he loves the game.
If you asked 10 legends, whether they would come back, I am not sure they would have been brave enough.
Thierry knows things are at stake, he is remembered as a legend, but for him, it is simple - he loves the game and wants to be a part of the club he loves.
I am sure he will get loads of games because I have seen him in training and I don't want too put too much pressure on, but he is looking really good.
Earlier this week, Laurent Koscielny had spoken of his admiration for Thierry Henry, who is training "like a 20-year-old." "He is leading by example, we saw it on Monday night," Koscielny had said:
At training, he runs everywhere. It's like he is 20 years old.It's thanks to players like him that we all improve. He is one of the greatest players to have played football and the squad needs to look up to him in the next two months to improve.
Maybe he has missed the atmosphere here, at the club and the stadium. We can see at training that he plays like if he was 20 and as if he had just broken into the first team. He wants to score, to help the team and to improve.
Henry is expected to be on hand this Sunday to help Arsenal win against Swansea City to ensure the team consolidates its position on the Premiership table. To this end, he is said to be working extra hard to regain full match fitness.
Arsene Wenger has this to say on the situation:
Thierry works very hard, is doing extra sessions and is highly motivated. He wants to help out so he makes extra sessions to try and get back to his full fitness.
He is not there yet but he is not far from the level he was at when he left here [in 2007]. He is fit enough to start a game but not fit enough to last or play the whole thing.
Those are the decisions I always have to make considering the balance of the team. He is here to help out in any way - that is even what he proposed. Does he sometimes start? Does he sometimes come on? That's what I have to decide. He is in the squad for Sunday.
Meanwhile, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain took to Twitter earlier this week to debunk the rumor that he is requesting to go on loan to get more games. Even Yours Truly (YT) had waded into the issue.
The exciting Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain will be seen more frequently in the coming year.
Now Arsene Wenger has moved to assure the lad and everyone else that the talented young player will get more games in the coming months:
He is very close now and he will be used in the next six months for sure. He is working on [his defensive side], his urgency and his committed level as well.
When you are a young, talented player you have to experience that talent is good, but that commitment at the top level is highly needed too. He is an intelligent boy, he understands that, and I am very happy with him. I am confident that in the next few weeks he will play.
Aaron Ramsey is looking forward to playing with the soon-to-return-from-injury Jack Wilshere. Speaking in a webchat for Chinese fans, Ramsey was full of admiration for the 20-year-old:
Jack is a great player for us; he had a really good season last year. It’s only a good thing to have competition for places.
It’s been quite weird because [initially] I was playing, so Jack went out on loan, then I got injured, so Jack played. We haven’t really had a chance to play together yet in the league. It will be good to have the competition.
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