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Thierry Henry: The two players who changed Arsenal's midfield


Arsenal legend Thierry Henry says the Gunners would have signed a defensive midfielder in January had Francis Coquelin not raised his level in midfield.

The 23-year-old made an immediate impact since he came into the first team at the end of last year and was one of the best players in the 2-0 win away at Manchester City.

"For me the best thing they've done is bring [Francis] Coquelin back from Charlton [Athletic]," Henry told Sky Sports News HQ.

"Maybe if he hadn't come back and played the way he did recently, Arsene would have gone and bought a defensive midfielder.

"He has been amazing, Arsenal don't look like they will concede, they can score and he gave everyone protection everybody was talking about.

"Sometimes you look for that player and they are right in front of you. But the guy has matured, he went on loan, and knows he had to perform and he is doing it."

Spain's Santi Cazorla is another player who has been in impressive form for Arsene Wenger's side so far this season and Henry believes the 30-year-old should be praised for Arsenal's recent run of form.

"Everyone is raving about [Alexis] Sanchez, and rightly so because he is amazing," the 37-year-old said.

"But the key for me was putting [Santi] Cazorla in the middle of the park."

The Gunners are yet to lose a game since suffering a disappointing away defeat at Southampton on January 1 and the Frenchman says anything can happen in the battle for the Premier League crown.

"If they go on a big run, you never know what is going to happen," he said.

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Francis Coquelin, Santi Cazorla, Thierry Henry