By Kevin Mooney
Thierry Henry has described his recent time at Arsenal as a "dream." But following the end of his loan spell at Emirates Stadium, the Frenchman has nothing but gratitude for the New York Red Bulls for allowing the move to happen.
"I will say thank you [to the Red Bulls] because the club has been more than nice with me, being able to understand how much it means to me to go and play for Arsenal Football Club," Henry told Arsenal Player.
"They knew it wasn't the plan right from the start, but it did happen and it's kind of difficult for me to say no to Arsenal Football Club."
There had been whispers in the media that Arsenal and the Red Bulls would work out a deal to extend Henry's loan to include this weekend's North London derby. The player would have been thrilled to line up against Spurs one more time, but Henry insists that now is the right time to go back to America.
"I didn't want to take advantage of the situation because they have been nice, the fans are waiting for me to come back with my team and prepare for the season with some new guys," Henry said. "For me it would have shown a lack of respect if I didn't come back at least to have the pre-season.
"I need to play the last three friendly games and then train with the guys and be involved with the team. That is important to me."
Also important to the Red Bulls captain is winning a trophy for his club. And he insists Red Bull supporters will see his drive to win on the pitch in the upcoming season.
"I want to compete," he said. "Whether you win or you don't, who knows? But the desire is to win something with Red Bulls, for sure. Sometimes I am over-committed in some games with them, but that's just me. I am a passionate boy, sometimes I go too far, but that's me."
Watch the full interview with Henry on Arsenal Player.
Copyright 2013 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source 23 Feb 2012