USMNT and RB Leipzig player Tyler Adams named Thierry Henry as the influential figure who pushed him to pursue a career in football.
The midfielder revealed on a recent episode of 90min’s Football Americana that his exposure to professionals like Thierry Henry during his time with the New York Red Bulls’ academy inspired his commitment.
“Being in and around the New York Red Bulls’ academy, I was exposed to the professionals training right next door to us, and seeing players like Bradley Wright-Phillips and Thierry Henry, it was like I’m so close to it, why not just go after it at this point? I’m making the commitment to try so hard and drive these extended hours.”
During his time at the academy, players like Rafa Marquez, Chris Albright and Tim Ream graced the Red Bulls pitch. But ultimately it was Henry that sealed the deal for Adams.
“Thierry Henry was the main person for me. I think every young kid, the players that they watch are the people that are scoring the goals at the end of the day. They just see whoever’s celebrating, getting the most attention. That’s the player you want to be like.
“And at that point in time, it was Thierry Henry for me, whether he was at Arsenal, Barcelona, those top clubs. Those are the games that are on TV, and those are the games that you’re constantly watching.
“So when he came to New York, that was a really big deal for me because I was in the academy, but I was also begging my mom every weekend to bring me to the games and sit in the first row at Red Bull Arena and watch him score goals. So that was definitely an honor as well,” said Adams.
The midfielder is well on his way to becoming a figure of his own, inspiring the younger players to chase the ‘American Abroad’ dream.