Thierry Henry moved to join Barcelona in 2007 after an impressive stint at the Emirates Stadium
Southampton loanee, Nathan Tella, cited Thierry Henry, a former Arsenal player, as someone he admired growing up, Soccernet.ng reports.
The British-Nigerian player said that he sought to imitate the French international in his games after beginning his career at Arsenal in 2015 and then transferring to Southampton in 2017.
Before heading on loan to Burnley last summer, Tella made 41 appearances for the Saints. During Burnley’s promotion back to the English Premier League, Tella’s performance at Turf Moor was explosive.
The Nigerian-born Stevenage native scored 19 goals in 44 games played in all competitions while playing for the Clarets this season.
He said that he has always been an Arsenal supporter when speaking to Sky Sports prior to Burnley’s home match against Cardiff City.
“I’ve always been an Arsenal fan, and at that time, I’d look at Thierry Henry and say he was my biggest inspiration in football,” the midfielder stated, according to hampshirelive.
In 1999, Henry moved to Arsenal from Juventus. In 376 games, he scored 228 goals and contributed 103 assists, leaving a lasting impression on the team.
Tella continued, saying that the 45-year-old was a person he sought to emulate.
He said, “He’s someone I tried to model my game after. Of course, at seven years old you can’t really say you play like someone, but the stuff he was doing in games I would try to do with my local team. Sometimes it worked, sometimes it wouldn’t but just having the confidence to try it, I feel like that’s what made me stand out a bit at an early age.”
Burnley will be looking to make Tella’s loan deal permanent after a successful stint with Vincent Kompany’s squad.