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07th Jun 2024

Arsenal legend names Thierry Henry as sweeper keeper in his all-time dream team


It’s a rogue choice, but the team sounds unbeatable.

Former Arsenal midfielder Gilberto Silva has named his dream 5-a-side team, and he has put ex-teammate Thierry Henry in as a sweeper keeper.

Gilberto was speaking to us ahead of the Champions League final, as Heineken celebrated hardcore fans at Wembley Stadium.

In its journey to become the world’s most inclusive football sponsor, Heineken is leveraging its 30 year partnership with UEFA to help level the playing field for all football fans by tackling the issues that prevent them from having an enjoyable, inclusive experience.

Carlo Ancelotti’s Real Madrid went on to win the game, overpowering Edin Terzić’s Dortmund side with two late goals from Dani Carvajal and Vinicius Junior.

Our reporter Jack Clarke asked the former Arsenal and Brazil star who he would pick to make up his all-time 5-a-side team.

The 47-year-old started off strong with the obvious choice – Lionel Messi.

It’s fair to say that the eight-time Ballon D’Or winner is a permanent fixture in everyone’s futsal side.

Zidane was the second name on the list. Zizou was a force of nature in a star-studded Galacticos side during the early 2000’s.

Not to mention he scored a brace in the 1998 FIFA World Cup final, leading the France national side to victory.

Of course, Cristiano Ronaldo made up a magic trio. He could probably have stopped there and that 3-a-side team would dominate most matches against five.

He named his fellow countryman and friend Roberto Carlos as the fourth. When it comes to set pieces there would be a battle over who would take it.

It’s gotta be Carlos on the long-range efforts. Those left-footed belters were unstoppable.

NETHERLANDS – APRIL 09: FUSSBALL: CHAMPIONS LEAGUE 96/97 A.AMSTERDAM-J.TURIN 1:2 9.4.97, Zinedine ZIDANE/Juventus Turin (Photo by Bernd Lauter/Bongarts/Getty Images)

Gilberto then realised he had to pick a goalkeeper, and as his mind wandered the choices you had a feeling that he was going to come up with a wildcard choice.

He asked if he could himself in, but of course that’s against the universally accepted rules of picking your 5-a-side outfit.

“I’ll put Thierry. I don’t need a goalkeeper,” the 2002 World Cup winner announced.

Gilberto appointed himself as the man in the dugout, and backed his team although acknowledged that he would need to come up with a creative way to block the opposing teams attacks.

So Thierry Henry sweeper keeper it is. I think we’d all like to see how that would go.

Heineken has redefined what it means to be a ‘real hardcore fan’ by highlighting those that go above and beyond to support the game they love and foster an inclusive space for all fans by creating a series of activations worldwide to put ‘hardcore’ fans front and center and refresh perceptions around the modern face of football fandom.

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