Thierry Henry set for Arsenal reunion as Gunners icon lands new job

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Arsenal icon Thierry Henry is reportedly poised to reunite with one of his former team-mates after taking over as manager of France’s under-21 side. It was announced on Monday that Henry had been appointed to replace Sylvain Ripoll, who was sacked following the Euros this summer.

Henry has signed a two-year deal with Les Bleus and will be tasked with managing France at the Olympic Games next summer in a high-profile test of his coaching credentials. He will reportedly be joined in the dugout by former Arsenal defender Gael Clichy, who played alongside Henry on 55 occasions during his time with the Gunners.

The 38-year-old will join Henry’s backroom team alongside former Angers boss Gerald Baticle, according to Le Parisien, with the latter set to serve as deputy head coach. Clichy is yet to officially retire from playing but is currently without a club after leaving Swiss outfit Servette at the end of last season.

It is also said that Lionel Rouxel, who manages France’s under-16 side, could be drafted in to join Henry’s group of assistants in due course.

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It remains to be seen how Henry will fare in his new role, which marks his first managerial job since leaving Montreal Impact in 2021. He has been out of coaching since last year’s World Cup, where he was an assistant to then-manager Roberto Martinez, and has spent much of his time working as a pundit on various TV channels over the last few months.

The former Arsenal striker will get his first taste of competitive action next month when France go up against Slovenia in qualifying for the Euros in 2025. He will be desperate to get off to a winning start as he looks to reignite his coaching career after being given the chance to do so on the books of his home country.

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Henry recently admitted that he was keen on returning to the dugout, although he reportedly turned down the opportunity to manage France women earlier this year. At the time, he was being linked with the vacant United States job following the departure of Gregg Berhalter, who left upon the expiry of his contract after the World Cup in Qatar.

“Would I put my name in the hat? First and foremost it’s a tricky one to talk about here,” said Henry. “Roberto Martinez went to coach Portugal and I’m not going to follow him, being a number two is not something I would like to do anymore. I would love to have a crack at it again.”

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