Thierry Henry is a player of sublime skill, a man who has provided more than his share of YouTube-worthy goals. His talent is undeniable, and his value to the New York Red Bulls (to the entire league, in fact) cannot be in question.
But it’s becoming increasingly clear: That man has anger issues. And he needs to get it sorted out.
It shows up when he gets frustrated, like when he acted like a child during a routine post-game interview earlier this year.
He can be sneaky about it, like the beginning of last year, when Henry routinely got away with doing that little hand-on-the-face-thing, where he seems to be giving a good natured acknowledgement to an opponent – but when he’s really giving ‘em the business, slapping them harder than they expected.
And how about last October, when he was busted red-handed attempting a real bit of naughtiness against Sporting Kansas City, crashing into a fallen Roger Espinoza?
That night, Henry immediately feigned innocence, as if he didn’t see Espinoza, or as if someone with his grace, balance and athletic ability, somehow, could not avoid a player on the turf while jogging by. We all saw through that one, right? (The referee certainly did, red carding Henry rightly right after he put his knee into the back of Espinoza’s neck.)
Well, something about Sporting KC brings out the worst in Henry.
Because he just got suspended for his latest shenanigan. This time Kei Kamara was the victim. Henry, once again, immediately fell to the turf as if he was the injured party.
And speaking of injury, let’s not forget two seasons back, when Henry injured FC Dallas goalkeeper Kevin Hartman in an episode that was probably more about carelessness than hostility. (Here’s the video clip of that one.)
Considering his history, Henry probably should have gotten more than one game for something so needless as what happened this week against SKC.
Next time it happens, MLS really should throw the book at him. The league simply cannot have different standards for marquee players in matters of discipline.