Thierry Henry Handballs France into World Cup 2010. Would You Have Done the Same?
Algeria, Greece, Portugal and Slovenia all won their playoffs and qualified for the World Cup today. Uruguay vs Costa Rica is happening as I type. But there’s one story that will be dominating the World Cup playoff headlines, and I think you already know what it is: Thierry Henry’s handball for France vs Ireland.
With the aggregate score at 1-1 and the game halfway through extra time, penalties were just around the corner. But in the 103rd minute Thierry Henry controlled the ball and crossed for William Gallas to head home the goal that sent France to World Cup 2010 and Ireland home. Only problem is that Henry controlled the ball with his hand. Twice.
To be more accurate, Henry controlled the ball on his forearm and then directed it with his hand. It was the upper body equivelant of taking the ball on your knee and then passing with your foot. There is very very little doubt in my mind that Henry handballed intentionally.
So yes, Henry has cheated France into World Cup 2010. Which is absolutely disgraceful. Not just from Henry but from the refereeing team too.
But before we all condemn Henry, let me ask you this. And please answer honestly: Would you have done the same?
If you were fighting to get your team to World Cup 2010, wouldn’t you do everything in your power to make it happen? Even if it meant bending or breaking the rules? I’m not excusing what Henry did, and he’s definitely (to quote Kevin Keegan) gone down in my estimation tonight. But I can definitely understand why he did it.