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Last Updated: Sunday, 21 May 2006, 02:15 GMT 03:15 UK
Arsenal rejected 50m Henry bids
Thierry Henry
Henry kneels before the home fans in the last game at Highbury
Arsenal vice-chairman David Dein says the club turned down two 50m offers for striker Thierry Henry before he agreed to sign a new four-year deal.

Henry's decision ended any chance of him replacing 47m Zinedine Zidane as the world's most expensive player.

"We turned down two world record deals from Spanish clubs. You don't have to be a rocket scientist to work out who they were," he told the Sunday Express.

"Our message was clear - he wasn't for sale. I'd like to think he heard that."

At Barcelona or Real Madrid, he would just be a prince. Here he knows he is a king
David Dein

Dein also revealed that the contract Henry signed was one that he was offered back in January.

"We made an offer in January, prodded Thierry now and then, but never put pressure on him," he said.

"Money wasn't really mentioned. He wanted to know where we were going, but in reality I think he knew."

Dein said the chance to influence the next generation of youngsters at Arsenal, who want to play with him, may also have persuaded Henry to stay on.

"He had seen the youngsters emerge after a dark period.

"We have three teenagers at the World Cup - how many other clubs can say that?

"The reason they are here is because of Thierry. The first question Theo Walcott asked was "Will Thierry still be here?".

"I believe he also knew that if he went to a club like Barcelona or Real Madrid, he would just be a prince. Here he knows he is a king."

Dein also hinted that Robert Pires could be ready to move away from the club.

He told BBC Radio Five Live: "There will be a time now where there will be certain changes.

"We are looking to bring in one or two new players and it may be that one or two decide it's time to move on."

SEE ALSO
Fans' reaction to Henry's loyalty
19 May 06 |  Football
Will Henry stay?
16 May 06 |  Arsenal
Henry won't be rushed into deal
19 Apr 06 |  Arsenal
Henry to decide future by 9 June
31 Mar 06 |  Arsenal
Henry plays down Barcelona talk
18 Mar 06 |  Arsenal


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