Jay Mariotti and the rest of his crew on ESPN's Around the Horn are a bunch of morons. They just finished debating the impact of Thierry Henry in MLS and whether or not it would be bigger than Beckham. Not surprisingly, they brushed Henry aside like a bum on the side of the road. Claiming nobody here has any idea who he is.
Well I will not let that happen. Here's a guy who still wants to play. Yes, his work ethic was an issue this past season at Barcelona and he is well beyond his peak years, but I will guarantee you that he is going to work his ass off when he gets here. Henry could care less about face time and being on the news - all he wants to do is play. Moreover, he's coming to a country and a city that he loves. Not to mention the fact that two of his closest friends, Tony Parker and Steve Nash, are here as well. (Knicks fans - Henry is the key to Tony Parker coming here next season. I promise you.) His impact will be huge.
Beckham on the other hand is a joke. He sounds like a girl. He cares more about sticking his junk in our faces on the sides of buses and billboards. He cares more about his clothes and his cologne and being seen at every big event in Los Angeles. He is the embodiment of that city. Henry will do everything for Major League Soccer that Beckham has not. You will see him in commercials to get people to come watch the Red Bulls - promoting the sport and not himself. He'll do interviews to talk about soccer and not his side projects and aspirations to play for a national team he has no business being on.
He'll raise awareness for the sport at charity events like Steve Nash's yearly showdown in Chinatown. On the field, he will run and give 110% each game (as opposed to Beckham), he will head the ball effectively (Beckham can't do that), he will use his left foot to cross balls if need be (Beckham can't do that), and he'll probably score a couple goals (Beckham? not so much). Most importantly though, he has won everything there is to win in Europe and on the world stage. His mind will be focused here and not elsewhere. This is his new mountain to climb.
Phew. Now that we got that out there, let's celebrate!!!
Henry highlight compilations here, here, and here. Free kicks compilation here. His kinda cute ex-wife here. Sexy over the shoulder pose from Thierry here. Photo shoot with the Red Bulls here.