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French soccer player Thierry Henry hopes to lend New York Red Bulls a hand

July 14, 2010 |  9:55 am

Henry_300 French striker Thierry Henry is a veteran player and former World Cup winner, but he might be better known, at least to casual soccer fans, for his infamous handball against Ireland last year.

Now he is hoping to lend a hand to the New York Red Bulls -- so to speak.

The 32-year-old former Arsenal and Barcelona player signed a multiyear contract on Wednesday and is set to debut with the Red Bulls on July 22 in an exhibition against Premier League club Tottenham.

Henry, who was released by Barcelona after scoring only four goals last season, will be introduced at a press conference Thursday at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, N.J.

"This marks an exciting new chapter in my career and life," Henry said in a video interview on the club website.

With France, Henry won the World Cup in 1998 and the 2000 European Championship. He sparked outrage last year when his handball during a playoff match helped to deny Ireland a spot at this year's World Cup.

Henry guided Arsenal to the Premier League title in 2002 and 2004. He left in 2007 to join Barcelona, where he won six trophies in 2009 -- the Champions League, the Spanish league, the Copa del Rey, the Spanish Supercup, the UEFA Supercup and the FIFA Club World Cup.

He did not start on France's disappointing World Cup team this year.

-- Chuck Schilken

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Photo: Thierry Henry with FC Barcelona in 2009. Credit: Manu Fernandez / Associated Press.