Arsene Wenger says French FA did not deal well with infamous Thierry Henry handball incident
FORMER Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has said the French FA did not deal well with the infamous incident in which Thierry Henry cheated Ireland out of a place in the World Cup.
n November 18, 2009, Henry illegally handled the ball in the box before scoring to see France beat Ireland 2-1 on aggregate in a crucial play off for the 2010 tournament.
The incident led to outrage from football fans across the world.
Speaking on the Late Late show on RTÉ tonight, French man Wenger, who managed Henry at Arsenal, said “c’est la vie,” but also said an offer should have been made to replay the game.
He compared it to Diego Maradona’s ‘Hand of God’ goal for Argentina against England in World Cup 86.
“I felt that Thierry Henry had the reflex of a goal scorer, like Maradona had against England.
“After that it was more embarrassing because… the Federation didn’t help him.
“I think the French federation should have offered to replay the game,” he told host Ryan Tubridy.
“Thierry Henry was very lonely out there, accused of course during that period of being a cheat.”
He pointed out that today that could of situation could not happen, due to VAR.
“The French Federation maybe didn’t handle the situation well at the time.”
He said he understood if Ireland fans were still upset about the incident.
“I believe that Thierry Henry regretted it after. He apologised for that.
“These guys are under pressure as well to preform. All in all it was a sad moment for Thierry,” he said before Tubridy added “and for us”.
“We can say, c’est la vie,” Wenger said.
During the interview, Wenger also said Ireland hero Roy Keane was a player who “flirted with violence.”