"When I arrived..." - Thierry Henry reveals the brutal way Xavi 'welcomed' him to Barcelona after Arsenal exit
| Last updated
Arsenal legend Thierry Henry revealed the brutal way Xavi welcomed him to Barcelona.
However, the France international’s world-class reputation meant little when he made the high-profile £21million move to Barcelona in 2007.
And, Xavi, who is two years Henry’s junior, was quick to humble the forward upon his arrival at the Catalan giants.
Xavi is a Barcelona legend. In his 767 games at Barcelona, he became an enormously influential figure in Spanish and world football, helping transform the role of a midfielder.
Moreover, the Spaniard returned to the Nou Camp as a manager in 2021 and has led the Catalan club to the brink of a La Liga title.
Henry reveals Xavi’s brutal Barca welcome
Henry’s impressive reputation did not protect him from an early humbling at Barcelona.
“When I arrived at Barça, I laughed at the 'More than a club' registered in the gallery,” Henry told Amazon Prime.
“Xavi put me back on track, he told me you haven't won anything here… When you've won, you can talk’”.
Xavi, who claimed 27 major trophies in his playing career, including the World Cup, had already won three La Liga titles and the Champions League upon Henry’s arrival.
Henry told the anecdote to explain how rules should be enforced within a dressing room.
The 45-year-old said: “In general, it is the elders who give you the rules when you arrive at the club.
“When I arrived at Arsenal, it was impossible to do what I wanted to do. You were fined if you ever overstepped a bit in your role.”
The discussion started as Henry considered Paris Saint-Germain's fine and suspension of Lionel Messi for undertaking a promotional visit to Saudi Arabia without permission.
Henry admitted the seven-time Balon d’Or winner was wrong to miss training, adding that the trip may have hurt the club's “pride”.