On This Day - 1999 - Thierry Henry signs for Arsenal

New Signing Thierry Henry holds his Number 14 shirt with Arsene Wenger - Arsenal Manager

Henry would go on to become an Arsenal great, and appreciated by many fans of different sides.

New Signing Thierry Henry holds his Number 14 shirt with Arsene Wenger - Arsenal ManagerNew Signing Thierry Henry holds his Number 14 shirt with Arsene Wenger - Arsenal Manager

£11 million may have seemed a lot of money for a player back in 1999 as Thierry Henry made the switch to Arsenal from Juventus - but it would prove to be something of a bargain in the long-term.

Henry went on to become one of the greatest players in the Premier League era. While he was loved by Arsenal fans he seemed to form a bond with many football fans. Portsmouth fans used to chant his name, while there were several occasions he was applauded by fans of his opponents.

Pace, vision and natural finishing ability were all things that made the Frenchman feared by his opponents.

When he signed in 1999, he was seen as the replacement for Nicolas Anelka. Henry could play wide but would end up playing through the middle - he would end that season with 26 goals in all competitions.

Thierry Henry celebrates goal v Manchester United 2000Thierry Henry celebrates goal v Manchester United 2000

There were several memorable goals during his time with the club, a looping volley over Fabian Barthez at Highbury in 2000 against Manchester United, a wonderful solo effort in the derby against Tottenham in 2002 and gliding through the Liverpool defence in 2004. Frankly, the list is endless but there are just a few of them.

Though his first two seasons didn't see any silverware for the club, his signing was already more than justified.

The 2001/02 campaign would see Arsenal win the double as they became Champions, and beat Chelsea in the FA Cup final at the Millennium Stadium - Henry contributed 32 goals that season in all competitions - and the following season was named both the Players Player of the Year and Football Writers Player of the Year despite missing out on the Premier League golden boot, and Arsenal missing out on the League title.

Thierry Henry celebrates goal v Liverpool 2004Thierry Henry celebrates goal v Liverpool 2004

Then came the season of the Invincibles, which Henry was a massive part of once again. His hat-trick against Liverpool in April of that season - on the back of elimination from the FA Cup and the Champions League - got things back on track when things could have easily unravelled. The same Player of the Year awards followed, as did the Golden Boot as Henry scored 30 league goals.

Thierry Henry with Premier League trophyThierry Henry with Premier League trophy

Another FA Cup came along in 2005, and in the last season at Highbury saw Henry score a hat-trick in their final game at the stadium in a 4-2 win over Wigan Athletic. That season saw him break the club's goalscoring record, the league goalscoring record and 100 league goals at Highbury, while Arsenal made it to the Champions League final, only to lose 2-1 to Barcelona in Paris.

His last season before moving on to Barcelona would be blighted by injuries, but Arsenal fans got another chance to see their hero don their colours once again. 

Following his successful spell with Barcelona, he would end up signing New York Red Bulls in the MLS, but January 2012 offered the opportunity for Arsenal to re-sign him on loan. Within minutes of his second debut he scored the winning goal of an FA Cup third round tie against Leeds United, almost as if it were a fairytale.

He would end up retiring from the game in 2014, and now comments on it for Sky Sports, but those that saw Henry at the peak of his powers when at Arsenal should feel lucky to have watched such a fine player in the flesh. 

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