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Barcelona president Joan Laporta has revealed that he has not given up hope of signing Arsenal striker Thierry Henry, despite being told that the French international was not for sale.

Laporta also praised coach Frank Rijkaard and the team following their unexpected 1-0 win over title-chasers Valencia at the Mestalla. The club have now won their last five matches and look on course to earn a place in next season’s Champions League.

“We spoke to Arsenal about the player (Henry),” Laporta told Catalan television station TV3.

“If I were him I would be happy that a club like Barca wants me and I would sign, because we are the best team in the world.

“But at the moment, the English club have told us that they are not willing to sell and have told us that the player is non-negotiable.”

Laporta went on to raise Rijkaard’s work at the club.

“We want to build a decent side,’ added Laprta. ‘Eight home-grown players figured against Valencia, which is full credit to our coaching staff.”

“Cruyff told me he (Rijkaard) was a decent coach.”

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