Thierry Henry singled out Emile Smith Rowe and Bukayo Saka for special praise after the youngsters impressed in Arsenal’s 3-1 derby win over Tottenham at the weekend.
The midfield pair, who both came through Arsenal’s academy system, were in superb form at The Emirates as Mikel Arteta’s men ran riot in front of their home fans, especially in the first half.
Smith Rowe fired the Gunners into the lead in the 12th minute, with Saka providing the assist. Smith Rowe then set up Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang for Arsenal’s second, before Saka netted a third in the 34th minute to put the home side firmly in control of the game.
Son Heung-Min netted what ended up being a late consolation for the visitors as Arsenal wrapped up a dominant victory and sealed their third win in a row in the Premier League.
Gunners legend Henry was delighted to see Arsenal’s younger players step up to the mark in the derby clash and he reserved special praise for Saka and Smith Rowe.
Speaking on Sky Sports’ Monday Night Football, Henry said: “Bukayo Saka and Smith Rowe. I think the team played really well and especially in the first half.
“For me, those two having a goal and assist. Arsenal played that game like a derby as they should, I don’t think Tottenham did, especially in the first half – but what a day.
“You want to see that more often, but for me the two kids, especially for the academy and what it represents.
“It is contagious, we need that at Arsenal, we need these types of performances and that is why Mikel went for guys that have that DNA in them, because they know what it is to compete and win.”
Henry also insisted that he and Swedish billionaire Daniel Ek are “here to stay” in their bid to complete a takeover of Arsenal.
The Gunners legend was pictured alongside Spotify chief Ek in the stands at The Emirates during Sunday’s derby victory.
The former France international had joined ex-Gunners Dennis Bergkamp and Patrick Vieira along with Ek in a bid to try buy the club from Stan Kroenke earlier this year – but the proposal were turned down by the current owners.
Henry, however, has insisted that he and Ek are still hopeful of completing a takeover further down the line.
Henry said: “To be able to progress you need someone to respond from the other side but nothing yet.
“He [Ek] is here to stay, so let’s see what is going to happen. For the moment, we enjoyed the win yesterday.”
Asked if they is any dialogue at the moment, Henry replied: “Not at the moment.
“I think it’s going to be long. How long? I don’t actually know, but we are here to stay.”
Arsenal are back in Premier League action on Saturday when they travel to take on Brighton and Hove Albion in the top flight.