Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger says he fears Thierry Henry may leave, but is helpless to prevent it.
The 28-year-old French striker is yet to open talks about extending his current contract, which ends in 2007.
"I'm not negative about it but you can say we are scared that we could lose him," said Wenger.
"If he signs a contract extension tomorrow, he could still leave at the end of the season. If he says he wants to leave, who can stop him?"
However, Wenger refuses to put pressure on the club's record goalscorer to start contract discussions.
"I don't deny there is danger in any situation, but if Thierry says he doesn't want to talk about it until the end of the season, you have to respect it," he said.
"What should I do - hang him up and tell him he has to talk?
"What can you ask of a player who is under contract and comes on for you after injury and scores two goals to win the game?"
Henry has stayed quiet on his future, saying he wants to wait until the end of the season to start contract talks.
The Gunners are struggling in the Premiership, something Henry believes is down to the summer departure of Patrick Vieira.
"The most important thing was to make people forget Patrick Vieira left and try to go on a good run and catch Chelsea. We've not done that," he said.
Spanish giants Barcelona are rumoured to be interested in signing Henry, who could leave for a fraction of his market value if his contract is almost up.