Arsenal legend, Thierry Henry, has revealed he ‘no longer recognises’ his former side after the club’s failed attempt to join the European Super League, which sparked a furious public backlash.
The Gunners were one of the 12 founding clubs to sign up to the breakaway competition, and one of English football’s self-styled ‘Big Six’ alongside Manchester United, Manchester City, Liverpool, Chelsea, and North London rivals Tottenham.
Hundreds of furious Arsenal fans descended on the Emirates on Friday in protest against owner Stan Kroenke’s role in signing up to the rebel league, with some fans hanging an effigy of the unpopular American owner.
Former boss Arsene Wenger and iconic ex-Gunners striker Ian Wright have already spoken up on the issue, and Henry told the Telegraph those involved got it ‘badly wrong’.
He said: ‘I do not recognise my club and what happened just now, with them trying to join a league that would have been closed, makes no sense to me. They have been running the club like a company, not a football club, and they showed their hand.
‘Maybe it’s a lack of understanding of the core football values and maybe the money was too big of a temptation. Whatever it was, they got it wrong. Badly wrong.
‘I was genuinely shocked like most people and couldn’t believe what was unfolding. I have never talked before, but what happened recently made me realise fans, this is your club. It is your club and I’m an Arsenal fan too.
‘I’m proud of what the fans achieved. Not just Arsenal fans, all the fans. The result was a victory for football.’
With huge pressure from managers, players, governing bodies, politicians and fans, all six English clubs have now withdrawn, but fury is unabated with Arsenal fans still calling for ownership change amid interest from Spotify founder Daniel Ek.