Updated – Henry confirms Arsenal exit

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Has Henry completed a move to Barcelona?Henry going to Barcelona for €24 million

Thierry Henry has confirmed that he will be leaving Arsenal to join Arsenal after months of speculation linking him with the Spanish club. He released his reasons for leaving Arsenal in a letter to the club’s supporters:

“Arsene has been part of my life for as long as I can remember. Unfortunately and understandably he has said that at this moment he will not commit to the club past the expiration of his current deal which finishes at the end of the coming season. I respect his decision and his honesty but I will be 31 at the end of next season and I cannot take the chance to be there without Arsene Wenger and David Dein.”

“This is solely my decision, no-one has forced me to do anything and I will represent myself in this transaction. I feel it is something I just had to do.”

“Barcelona are a wonderful club steeped in tradition and play beautiful football. I’m sure I will be very happy there. But I will miss the Arsenal fans dearly, they have supported me through thick and thin. They will always be in my heart, as will all the fans who make the game here so special. I will always have a special bond with Arsenal Football Club.”

“I still must pass a medical on Monday but yes, I have chosen Barcelona. I will sign there for the next four seasons. Nothing has been signed yet but both sides reached an agreement on Friday.”

There’s not much else to say at this point except that I am pretty annoyed.

After consistently reassuring readers from all over the world that Henry would be staying with the club next season I feel like a bit of an idiot. I guess that’s life.

When I have time to get over the shock and gather my thoughts about what Henry’s exit will mean for the Arsenal Football Club you’ll here more from me.

Until then, try and have a good one.

In the meantime, voice your opinions on Henry joining Barcelona by leaving a comment.


34 thoughts on “Updated – Henry confirms Arsenal exit

  1. Hi all, fastern your seat belt. Time for the summer roller coaster ride! Could be a joy ride if Arsenal able to reclaim the PL title! Look at ManYoo & Real Madrid, they reclaimed the title after they sold their main striker last season. AC Milan won UCL after they sold Shevchenko. One thing really worry me is the Arsene Wenger future with all the board drama. If he doesn’t sign any extension of his soon to expire contract, I can’t see any how is he going to convince other players in the team. Without contract extension, I can’t see we able to do the ManYoo’s way to reclaim title. Once that happen I very sure Fab4 is going leave too.

  2. Times are really rough, however, everything that has a beginning has an end. He was destabilising the club with his comments on Dein’s departure etc. Hear him ‘I’m an Arsenal player for now’ when he had a contract with three more years to go. No one should think that he’s bigger than the club. Ian Wright, TA, Viera, DB all gone but Arsenal is still around. I trust Wenger, he doesn’t make foolish decisions, he knew the time was ripe to sell him. At 16+, it was a handover to Barca, but fans let’s move on. Now, we will need to replace him quickly and need to think about Gilberto’s absence for the Copa America, then sort out the problem of Toure and Eboue leaving for ANC games, the issue of LM is still not resolved. But let’s trust Arsene, he’s decided and I know this is a decision in the interest of the club.

    SPANISH FRY-I’m also angry and shocked but don’t worry, everything will be fine with Arsenal; continue to trust Arsene on this one too, he knows what is best for the club.

    INDIA GUNNER-Arsene will sign another contract, he always leave it late. Ade said that he spoke to them before the summer break and he said to them that he will stay beyond the end of this contract. Arsene is a gentlemen and he’ll never leave all the young guns he’s assembled to their fate. Trust him to deliver.

  3. I agree that things will go on Harlan, just shocked that this has actually happened. For all the speculation I really did not see it coming.

  4. Well I am as shocked as everyone else but he has been making noises for a while. So I say good luck to him at Barca, my second favourite team anyway :p.
    Who could possibly replace him, Torres’ current £27m valuation is a joke and I have not seen anyone who has impressed me sufficiently.
    Titi says Wenger is not extending his contract, now that would be a real disaster. This is just a big loss and a disappointment.

  5. the thing is, we have to move on, if we did not sell this summer is value would of went down next summer as well, and every summer until theirry is 50 he would of been linked to barca.

    now he is gone we can build a team around robin van persie and mr. cesc fabregas

  6. I don’t understand where is the logic: Henry for £16m and Bent £17m or latest rumour of £16m? Just wonder for £16m, who will you buy? Unless there is swap deal included like Eto or even Saviola other wise it does make sense to me. If no swap deal then I really have to question AW’s economic sense.

  7. Just to update, there has been no word of a swap deal or any other signings. I have been looking hard online for the past few hours to try and get any scraps of information about who will be coming in. Like you, India-Gunner, I am really confused about what has happened. I don’t have a problem with the amount of the sale, but when you do put it in perspective by comparing it to Bent you have to ask some big questions of Arsene Wenger and the club at this stage.

  8. Seem like we have the trend of selling our captain huh? Can you bet Gilberto Silva will leave Arsenal after 07/08 season?

  9. I’l rather shoked but i knew when titi was saying “I’m an Arsenal player for now”, that ment that he was thinking about leave seriously. To replace him I read on a serious french website that arsenal was looking to sign former gunner Nicolas Anelka from bolton for 15 million €. But I think Sir Wenger should buy Athletico Madrid striker Fernando Torres. Maybe he’s more expensive but I think it’s worth it.
    As for our great coach, I hope he will stay at arsenal but he is more likely to stay with the young team he’s building.
    And I just thought that barcelona love to buy arsenal players it’s been the same thing with Overmars, Sylvinho, Van Bronchost and now Henry!! lukely we stoof from them 2 elements from them: Fabregas et Fran Merida who both have a great future ahead of them!!

  10. Buying Anelka for that much money would be a joke. Torres would be worth it, I agree. I think the real transfer speculation is about to begin.

  11. The greatest player in the world going for the same amount of a championship player who can’t make it in the rubbish england side?
    If there isn’t a swap as well, I’m gonna be fucking annoyed at that more than anything. Thierry has been great and after that season he has learnt that he is no longer top dog (Van Persie) up front, not the best captain for the team (Gilberto) and he will be missed but we made it to fourth without him.
    Two points to remember though:
    Utd just won the season without their best striker.
    When Anelka left I felt the same way and we plucked from relative obscurity the best striker in our history.
    Think about it.

  12. There is no doubt that we can’t move on Samuel. I’m just personally gutted that I will not get to watch Henry play for Arsenal again. I genuinely had a love for him and what he gave for the club and it will be sorely missed, regardless of our success next year. Interestingly, Manchester United sold their best striker and he helped his new team win the Spanish League. Manchester won the league in spite of van Nistelrooy’s exit – not because of it and if Arsenal succeeds it will be the same.

  13. I know arsenal can get better with Henry gone because wa played most of the season without him and up front Van Persie and even Adebayor can do good thing for the club. I hope next season will be better

  14. Everything that have been said are true to our situation at the moment. Now we need to replace him quickly, ‘cos Adebayor,Toure and Eboue will all be gone for about 6 weeks in January-february 2008. RVP,Bendtner and Theo can’t hold it together if we want to make a claim to the title and also the cups. AW is being too slow, ‘cos this problem need to fixed before pre-season, otherwise trust AW. His decisions are always right. I tell you, he’re better informed than we are. It’s painful, but in the circumstances, his pronouncements coupled with his injuries and a drop under his own benchmark; I believe the time was ripe to sell. Let’s wish him well and pray for Arsenal.

  15. Henry, how can you say that you love arsenal and then leave because of dean. dean was not arsenal. what about you wenger? are you leaving too. you cannot run away when things get tough, you have to be strong and stay to fight on, otherwise, you are a coward.

  16. Henry thank you for contributing your quota to Arsenal, indeed you tried. But to me, you are a coward, liar and inconsistent.

    No player is bigger than Arsenal, we should move forward please.

    Is he loyal to Dein and Wenger or Arsenal? Good riddance to bad rubbish.

    Wenger and whoever among the players that is interested in leaving should tell us now.

  17. If Monday announcement confirm that TH14 gone for £16m without any swap deal. All gooners especially the season ticket should ask AW to leave THIS season. It might be better to have one BIG blow rather than unsettle the whole team coming season and after that. Think about if you own a football club, would it be better to negotiate to buy a player from Arsenal or Charlton? Darren Bent for £17m and Thierry Henry for £16m!!!!!!!!!! What a joke. No wonder all the big European clubs like to create rumour to unsettle our players every season. They all have been encouraged by how we sell own players. So Arsenal’s way of trading player is buy cheap and sell cheap!!! So we are cheap club huh ???

    I won’t be pissed if TH14 gone with £30m but f*cking cheaper than Darren Bent .. F*ck F*ck F*ck
    West Ham must be thinking what the f*ck why don’t they bid for TH14 with only £16m???

    Anyway I wish Henry have a good time in Barca.

  18. Ok, it’s been a while since I last posted so a couple of random opinions…

    I am fucking gutted Thierry left no doubt, but I have supported arsenal since I was four and the team I supported has been without henry on the pitch (will miss the dancing i guess) for half a season. We made it to fourth last season with no real goalscorer and next season i see van persie getting 20+.

    To say Arsene is being slow is ludicrous. Face it we have him for at least a year and we won’t know about his future till after the seasons end. He has already bought 2 players, started to rid of dead weight (ali, bap, not henry) and those who don’t see themselves in our future (henry). The spanish league only ended this week and is the most important place for us this summer in selling (henry, reyes) and hopefully buying (rumours of robinho or torres).

    All the team needs is the same but the order of importance has changed. Width is still lacking, but we do have hleb (remember he was great at the first half of last season), hopefully a fit rosicky and the swedish captain. It can wait. But it was pretty much agreed we needed another striker and instead of looking for a 3rd/4th backup guy, ade, bendtner and walcott can fill that role the way we have always trusted the youth and van persie needs a comptetent partner.

    So who? Daily Mail (I only read it because it was about at work, i wouldn’t buy such rightwing crap) says Henry money goes towards Tevez. The rumour mill is sparking ideas of Reyes+money for Torres. Trezegeut. Or Anelka returns. So what about them?
    1. Tevez. I’d fucking love it. If Wenger was to buy him outright and not have to deal with the problems surrounding him and west ham, i wouldn’t even mind thierry’s exit. Similar to Henry, in that he WILL put the ball away but isn’t selfish and works towards a team victory.
    2. Torres. Poacher in style. Is what I see Van Persie once he becomes the great of the future we all know he is close to becoming. And yet still seems to remember the other ten players in the team, and will suit us the way henry and van persie do as goalscorers.
    One major problem with me though: Arsenal+Talent in Spain = Reyes problem, Baptista failure, Cesc being barca homesick. Repeat problem?
    3. Anelka. He was great and he was supposed to be Wenger’s great hope before it became Henry. But no one remembers he played with a whole different team. He went to a fast unstoppable Real similar to the arsenal of today and failed. He doesn’t score often for a boring long ball Bolton and he moves around alot. Would Wenger be able to keep him here and bring him back to the class of football we only saw from him before he left us? A big risk but I would love to see it work.
    4. Trezegeut. Rumours were that he was to come for Henry and Wenger and one of them is still here. Juventus may cave in contract talks? It seems unlikely now but he is a 20+ goalscorer and is almost identical to Henry (well, a class down) and has a bond with Wenger and the french. At 5mil would rotate with Ade and create serious competition for 2nd spot as the other 3 would walk straight into team (maybe not anelka).

    Fucking Henry. He was a God to me. And now he is just a really good footballer I have fond memories of.

  19. One more thing, “all down hill from here” is just a stupid idea (not being insulting to who said it, more the doom mongering papers). We came joint third without our best striker (yes, van persie last season) and our captain.
    Now imagine a team without the injury problems a world cup can cause:
    A world class goalie fighting for his position with polish player of the year (for the past two years).
    A back four that has will have finally come together. Clichy better than Cole? Eboue seemed to stop the antics? Gallas and Toure had the last third of the season to learn to gel, both are world class defenders.
    A midfield with Cesc and Gilberto running things and Diaby showing more and more how he could better both if given time. Rosicky and Ljungberg both injury free? They have both proved themselves as good as say Robben and Cole. Hleb had a blinder of a first half of the season, if he starts well and we buy some competetion to keep him wanting to start, performances will have to be maintained by all.
    Up front? Van Persie to be top scorer in the premiership next season? Anyone genuinely not believe it can’t happen? One of the four named above or trust in Wenger to do his well proven pick from obscurity? He has his doubters but Ade is a rough gem in my eyes. Bendtner has already made the danish national team hasen’t he and walcott vowed to get at least 10 goals next season.
    The manager? He has three premiership titles, a billion fa cups, a champions league final. No one can doubt his right to be manager. And if you built a new stadium, training ground and bloody team (and soon a director to suit him) for less than chelsea spend on half time oranges, I seriously don’t see him leaving unless he can prove this season with a treble that he was right to do it his way.

    Once we fill the holes, I will start getting excited with genuine belief in a successful season (not like say, a spurs fan).

    (Also, praise to spanish fry. I know its a relatively new site compared to say arseblog but I post here because people seem more interested in smart discussion of football instead of just insulting each other. Well written too.)

  20. SAMUEL

    You’re spot on; there is no need to panic. Arsene knows what he’s doing.The premiership will be shocked next season. We will still need a left midfielder though, not a RM who plays LM and cuts in like Rosicky. We need some width.

  21. Hello all. Really good comments there Samuel, very sensible and rational. Thanks for your compliments about my blog, I really do appreciate it.

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