If certain reports are true, it appears Arsenal will be getting the return of a legend for Christmas this year.
The Times reported on Monday that Arsenal are working on a deal that would return New York Red Bulls captain Thierry Henry to north London this January. According to the report, Henry would join the Gunners for only one month. He would serve as a backup to Robin Van Persie, and would be available for up to four Premier League contests; matches against Fulham, Swansea City, Manchester United and Bolton Wanderers.
Henry has spent time training with Arsenal during the Major League Soccer offseason. The legend has also made it well known that he would not turn down any deal that sent him to his former club for any amount of time. Everton boss David Moyes reportedly approached Henry last week regarding a loan, but such a move was deemed by most sources to be unrealistic, at best.
There's no denying that Henry's best days are behind him. Most notably, he now lacks the pace that, along with his other numerous gifts, made him an unstoppable force while in his prime. With that said, Henry enjoyed quite the successful campaign with the Red Bulls this past season. He netted 14 goals, saved points for New York on more than one occasion and demonstrated several times that he's still an elite goal scorer when working from the left side of the penalty area. Henry may no longer be able to consistently start at the highest level, but any manager in the world could do much worse than having the New York captain as an available option.
Any one-month loan that ends in February doesn't affect the Red Bulls too much; unless, of course, Henry were to get injured. Wearing an Arsenal shirt during Premier League matches would mean more for Henry than would any January training that would take place in the States. Playing and training with Arsenal during the early stages of the new year could keep Henry in-form leading up to New York's preseason tournament set to take place this coming February. While fatigue may be somewhat of a concern, it should be noted that Henry is guaranteed to sit out at least a few matches during the 2012 MLS campaign for a variety of reasons.
This is a move that, if it occurs, will keep the New York captain happy, in shape and motivated throughout the offseason. Perhaps Henry could even do a little work promoting the Red Bulls brand while overseas. Even better, maybe he'll bring one of his mates back with him to play for New York. The club could certainly use the help.