Just how long will Henry’s loan run and what shape will he be in when he returns?
The Gunner’s legendary striker and current Red Bull captain made quite a splash notching a dramatic, game winning goal over Leeds in his debut performance. Nostalgia flowed like wine as Henry’s comeback was quickly heralded by pundits around the globe.
After the match, Arsenal coach Arsene Wenger clarified the details of the loan, revealing that a short extension would be a possibility. “He has six and a half weeks and we have not envisaged more,” he told reporters. “We can go to eight weeks but not longer.”
That puts his availability at February 26th; just in time for the London derby against Tottenham.
Now, there is no reason to think Henry will stay past the 26th, but take the following into account: Arsenal continue to struggle offensively, and the Red Bulls have a hard time saying no to a player of his stature. If the Gunners prospects worsen, and Henry magically heats up for them, will he entertain an extension?
Or lets look at a more realistic scenario. Henry recently missed a match against Manchester United due to a “calf strain.” Last season, he limped his way back to health for the better part of five games battling achilles tendinitis.
This begs the question; what condition will Henry be in when he returns? Will he need more rest than a pair of weeks prior to the new season for recovery? During a less than inspiring midweek tilt against Bolton, he looked stoic up top. Was that any indicator of his health?