Henry backs the Beast
By Alex Dunn
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Julio Baptista has revealed a pep talk from Thierry Henry gave him confidence.
Julio Baptista has revealed a pep talk from Thierry Henry gave him the confidence to fight for his Arsenal future, after a difficult acclimatisation to life in the Premiership.
The powerful Brazilian has struggled to demonstrate his quality in the capital thus far since joining Arsenal from Real Madrid, in the deal that saw Jose Antonio Reyes move in the opposite direction, but on Tuesday night against Liverpool he found his feet magnificently.
At the epicentre of all that was good about Arsenal in their 6-3 victory at Anfield, Baptista scored four goals and was even afforded the luxury of missing a penalty.
Baptista has made just three Premiership starts since arriving at Emirates Stadium five months back but after a heart-to-heart with his captain, he now accepts that adapting to a different style of football, indeed a different culture, will take time.
"A few weeks ago I was left out of the squad and Henry came to chat with me," he told The Sun.
"He told me to have patience, that it's not easy and that it took him a year to adapt and he went through difficult times.
"He told me how he would try and control the ball but before he'd even brought it down he had three rivals on him.
"He pointed out fouls that were yellow cards in England that would be red in Spain.
"I don't mind a battle but some things are difficult to understand.
"Things haven't been going well and I never dreamed I would score four goals for Arsenal in one game at a wonderful stadium like Anfield.
"I surprised myself but I'm starting to play more and more in the way I want."