After a short loan from the New York Red Bulls, famous French forward Theirry Henry will finish his loan with Arsenal on time. Following successful appearances with his long-time former team, Henry will only appear twice more for the Gunners, once in the Premier League versus Sunderland and next week’s Champion’s League match against AC Milan.
Gunners fans will be sad to see him go, as he scored twice in only five appearances off the bench, including one in the 7-1 victory over Blackburn. With his two goals, Henry extends his club record to 228 goals. He will return to New York on February 16th.
Meanwhile the rest of the Premier League stays a close race. Though the Man. City and Man. United have some breathing room in the one and two spots (57 pts; 55 pts respectively), Tottenham is not far behind. Then you get into a blood bath for fourth: with Chelsea (43) the current leader, only 3 points separate the next three teams, in descending order: Newcastle (42), Arsenal (40), and Liverpool (39).
The close race makes for big-time anticipation for some games this weekend. Most notably, is the Manchester Untied v. Liverpool matchup. These two rivals are tough to overshadow, especially with the drama of Patrice Evra and Luis Suarez, who could see his first start in seven weeks. Add to this the bounce-back attempt of the injury-stricken Man United roster, and you have a great game, in theory.
Other teams in that shortlist of contenders include Tottenham v. Newcastle (ESPN), Sunderland v. Arsenal, and Everton v. Chelsea. Everton is notably coming off that upset victory over Manchester City last week. Also worth mentioning is Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp’s consideration for the England National Team manager position. If he keeps his team in the race for the second half, it will be increasingly tougher for him to leave the Spurs to take the reigns of the Three Lions for the Euro 2012 Championship tournament come summer.