In Brief

Thierry Henry to coach Spurs defenders in new Belgium role

Arsenal legend takes up role with Belgian FA after leaving Gunners in row over TV commitments

Thierry Henry has taken up a new role coaching players from some of Arsenal's fiercest rivals.

His shock appointment as assistant manager of Belgium sees the Gunners legend team up with former Everton boss Roberto Martinez, who took over from Marc Wilmots as Belgium manager after Euro 2016, when the team lost to Wales.

Henry had been offered a role at the Emirates working with the Under-18s, but it was reported earlier in the summer that Arsene Wenger had vetoed the plan[a] because he was uneasy about Henry's media commitments. Others suggested the Gunners boss feared the former player could undermine him in the final year of his contract.

Arsenal's loss is Belgium's gain and Henry will now be working with the likes of Eden Hazard of Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur defenders Jan Vertonghen and TobyAlderweireld.

However, it is the Belgian strikers who stand to gain most. "The appointment gives Henry the chance to impart his vast knowledge to some of the Premier League's most potent frontmen - Romelu Lukaku, Christian Benteke, Divock Origi, Michy Batshuayi and Kevin De Bruyne," says [1]Sky Sports.

Martinez declared himself delighted with the news. "Thierry is an important figure. He will bring something different. He agreed right away to join us. He is someone who knows how to develop a collective mentality, how to work together to win. He won the World Cup in 1998 and has the experience to achieve great things," he said.

Henry, who will juggle his new role with his punditry commitments on Sky Sports, wrote on Twitter: "Honoured to be assistant coach for Belgium. Thanks to Roberto Martinez and the Royal Belgian FA. Very excited. Can't wait."

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