Thierry Henry has been relieved of his duties as AS Monaco manager, according to a report from BBC Sport’s David Ornstein.
Henry was suspended from coaching on Thursday by the club, and Ornstein says the decision to permanently part ways has already been made.
“BBC Sport understands (the suspension) is merely procedural and that the France World Cup winner has already left the club,” Ornstein wrote. Assistant Franck Passi will take over in the meantime, with previous manager Leonardo Jardim being tipped for a surprise full-time return.
It’s been an out-and-out slog for Henry at Monaco. Appointed to the position on Oct. 13, he’s won just four of 20 matches across all competitions and taken just nine points from an available 36 through 12 Ligue 1 fixtures.
Two years after winning the title under Jardim, who was sacked on Oct. 11 after a rough start himself, Monaco sits 19th in the table with odds as “good” as 2-to-1 or bad as 7/4 to be relegated, depending on where you shop.
Monaco’s business model has long been predicated on mining young stars-in-waiting and developing them until they’re sold to bigger clubs for hefty sums of money, which would in turn be spent on the next generation of young talent. It’s also become a destination club for veterans whose careers are winding down.
Since last summer alone, Monaco has sold the likes of Kylian Mbappe to Paris Saint-Germain (after a loan deal last season), Fabinho to Liverpool, Thomas Lemar to Atletico Madrid and João Moutinho to Wolverhampton Wanderers, while signing Cesc Fabregas and Nacer Chadli in the transfer market.
But this year’s squad has been ransacked by injuries and inconsistency. Henry walked into a veritable mess when he took the job, and his clashes with opponents and hard-line treatment of first-choice players haven’t been well-received.
Henry was one of the finest strikers ever to play the game, and his legendary career — which included a World Cup title, a European championship, a Champions League crown and league titles in three different countries — began at Monaco in 1994. His magic touch hasn’t extended to his first head job, however, although he was on the staff that led Belgium to a third-place finish at last summer’s World Cup.
The 41-year-old will likely get another managerial job in the future, and that will tell us if his tumultuous time at Monaco was symptom of the club or Henry himself.
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