Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger paid tribute to his young team after their 1-0 Champions League victory over Real Madrid at the Bernabeu and said he hoped the victory would help to persuade match-winner Thierry Henry to stay at the club.
Henry scored the only goal of the game in the second minute of the second half to secure the first ever victory by an English team at the Bernabeu stadium.
“What more can I say about Thierry Henry?” said Wenger afterwards. “I hope the quality of our young team will convince him to stay with us. We are growing and we do not want to take a step back because our best player leaves I hope it convinces him that his future is at the club when the young boys produce a performance like that.”
“I have felt for a while that this young team is flourishing. I felt that there was something coming out, and tonight we produced it. We were the sharper team and we defended well when we needed to and created danger when we wanted to. Overall, it was a very positive game. The only regret I have, maybe, is there was room for two more goals. We had the chances that we didn’t take to end the tie.”
Henry, meanwhile, paid tribute to his Arsenal team-mates. “We were brilliant defensively,” he said. “Freddie, Gilberto and Cesc were all over the pitch and some of the things the young players did at their age at the Bernabeu were amazing.”
On his goal, Henry admitted: “We had some chances that we wasted in the first half and I said to myself, I have to take that chance.”