Former Monaco assistant Joao Tralhao shares insight into Arsenal legend’s managerial potential


Thierry Henry is an icon of the beautiful game.

The Arsenal legend was signed by Arsene Wenger from Juventus in 1999, with initial thoughts revolving around how the young Frenchman at the time would fair as a left-winger in north London.

But le Professeur analysed his best qualities and instead moulded Henry into a lethal striker, which will go down as one of the best tactical decisions he has ever made.

Excellent in occupying defenders with his back to goal, devasting pace and movement, incredible decision making, playmaking prowess, elite finishing and the ability to score an abundance of goals in many different ways – he had it all and is certainly one of the best forwards to have ever graced the English shore.

With an astonishing 217 goals and 88 assists in 339 Arsenal appearances, Henry’s output was incredible and even to this day, it’s difficult to understand how Pavel Nedved was awarded the Ballon d’Or in 2003 ahead of him.

An outstanding playing career, but the focus is now onto management for the former Barcelona man and certainly, it’s been a turbulent start for him in this field.

With Monaco his first stint as a head coach, Henry faced a plethora of different hurdles and as time went on, it turned out to be an incredibly difficult job for him.

But there were mitigating circumstances and this is echoed by Joao Tralhao, his assistant manager at the time, who gives an excellent interview for The Arsenal Way.

Tralhao dissects how the two faired together in France and is confident that Henry will eventually become one of ‘the best coaches in the world’.

“I think now it’s a fact that Thierry was one of the greatest footballers in the world of all time,” he said

Despite his struggles at Monaco, Tralhao believes Henry has what it takes to become one of the best managers in football.
Despite his struggles at Monaco, Tralhao believes Henry has what it takes to become one of the best managers in football.

“He belongs to a very restricted group of the best players in the world of all time. I had an opportunity to view him in the pro license, he’s a gentleman, he’s a very good person, I like him a lot.

“And as a coach, of course, he is going in the right track because unfortunately the Monaco challenge I think was a little bit complicated for us and for every coach that went at that moment to Monaco.

“You had Leonardo Jardim, a very good coach at that time, he became Champion in France, he achieved the semi-finals in the Champions League with Monaco and he faced very hard periods at that time as well.

“The club was going through a transition phase for another cycle, when we arrived, Thierry arrived in Monaco, that environment was not the best environment as you can imagine.

“We tried to help the club create the right environment for the next phase, the next cycle. And Thierry of course, as a coach, I can tell you he will be one of the best coaches in the world in a few years.

“He is very young and he is going, I believe he is going in the right track.

“He has all the qualities to be one, one elite coach because in terms of game knowledge, in terms of his philosophy, in terms of his qualities, human values, in terms of his leadership qualities, he’s outstanding.

“It’s excellent level, I can tell you. I believe in him, I believe that he will achieve the best level in the coaching world.”

Without a shadow of a doubt, Henry would have gained valuable knowledge from his experience with Monaco and he showed clear managerial improvements during his next job with Montreal Impact.

Henry signed with the Major League Soccer side back in November 2019 and although the effects of a global pandemic created unfamiliar challenges, Henry coped well and guided Montreal to their first playoff berth in four seasons.

In February of this year, Henry stepped down from his role with the club as he wanted to remain closer to his children in London, but he will now hope he can continue the process of learning with Roberto Martinez as the assistant manager of the Belgium national team.

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Source by Football London

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