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Thierry Henry heaps praise on ‘special’ Eric Cantona and picks him for Premier League Hall of Fame

‘The collar up, his goals, his attitude… I was like “I want some of that”‘: Thierry Henry heaps praise on ‘special’ Eric Cantona and picks compatriot for Premier League Hall of Fame with Jamie Carragher backing Steven Gerrard as ‘best all-round player’

  • Thierry Henry revealed Eric Cantona inspired him to play in the Premier League
  • The former Arsenal man backed his compatriot for the league’s Hall of Fame
  • Jamie Carragher argued Steven Gerrard should be picked in next round of voting
  • Pundit claimed his former team-mate is best all-round player in league’s history

Thierry Henry revealed watching Eric Cantona for Manchester United inspired him to one day follow his countryman’s lead and shine in the Premier League.

The former Arsenal striker joined Alan Shearer as the first two inductees to the Premier League Hall of Fame, and a 23-man shortlist has been put together for fans to vote on and judge who the next six should be. 

Henry was full of praise for Cantona as he put forward the case as to why the Frenchman had to be inducted next.

Eric Cantona has been backed to be inducted into Premier League Hall of Fame in next group

Eric Cantona has been backed to be inducted into Premier League Hall of Fame in next group

Thierry Henry revealed his compatriot inspired him to want to play in the Premier League

Thierry Henry revealed his compatriot inspired him to want to play in the Premier League

Thierry Henry revealed his compatriot inspired him to want to play in the Premier League

‘He was very French wasn’t he? The collar up, his goals, his attitude, the way he scored goals – it was like “yeah I’ve scored them, so what?'”, Henry told Sky Sports.

‘For us (in France), it was the beginning of everything. I’m not saying we didn’t know much about the PL, but it wasn’t well televised. 

‘When he went there, we started to think “wow, what a league”. Fans, atmosphere, Cantona. 

‘A French guy that goes and plays for Manchester United and your nickname is The King, when you know the history of the club? I was like, “wow, I want some of that”.  

Jamie Carragher was in full agreement that Cantona was worthy of a place in the Hall of Fame, but he gave even stronger views on a former team-mate of his.

Jamie Carragher argued Steven Gerrard is the best all-round player in Premier League history

The pundit backed Steven Gerrard to be selected, and went as far as claiming the legendary Liverpool midfielder is the greatest all-round player to have ever featured in the Premier League.

‘I’ve always said (Henry) is the best player to play in the Premier League , but what I would say is Steven Gerrard is possibly the best all-round player,’ Carragher said.

‘I know we’ve had that debate before – Scholes, Gerrard, Lampard. I know people will look at that list, and say all the other players have won the Premier League, Stevie didn’t win the league.

‘My two arguments are – there’s no player in the history of the league, even you (Henry) or Alan Shearer who were in the PFA Team of the Year more than Steven Gerrard. That shows what the players he played against thought of him. 

The pundit claimed nobody could match his former team-mates's consistency across the pitch

The pundit claimed nobody could match his former team-mates's consistency across the pitch

The pundit claimed nobody could match his former team-mates’s consistency across the pitch

‘Eight times, no-one has ever got to that many – it just shows how dominant he was in the Premier League. 

‘Stevie I think if he’d have played right back, he’d have played for England at right back. He did play holding midfield and attacking midfield. 

‘He had two or three seasons as a number 10 off Torres, and how he performed in those two years – I’d put him up alongside any number 10 in the Premier League. The goals he scored, and the assists.

‘Right midfield he got PFA Player of the Year in 2006, I think he played there and scored 20 goals from right midfield. In terms of all-round quality and someone who could have played all over the pitch, to a similar standard, those are the two reasons he’s gone in for me.’


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Bourbiza Mohamed. Writer and Political Discourse Analysis.

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