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Can Thierry Henry Wake 'Sleeping Giant'? Frenchman Set to Be Aston Villa Manager

© AP Photo / Petr David JosekBelgium assistant coach Thierry Henry eyes the ball prior to the semifinal match between France and Belgium at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the St. Petersburg Stadium, in St. Petersburg, Russia, Tuesday, July 10, 2018
Belgium assistant coach Thierry Henry eyes the ball prior to the semifinal match between France and Belgium at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the St. Petersburg Stadium, in St. Petersburg, Russia, Tuesday, July 10, 2018 - Sputnik International
Former France and Arsenal star Thierry Henry is hotly tipped to get his first job in football management - at Aston Villa. But will be bring success to a team which had its glory days back in the early 1980s?

Henry is one of the betting favorites to be named as the next manager of Aston Villa, who sacked their manager Steve Bruce — the former Manchester United player — on Wednesday, October 3.

The Birmingham-based club, who won the European Cup in 1982, are considered "sleeping giants" but dropped out of the Premier League two years ago and have failed to get back up.

The club were taken over by billionaire businessmen Wes Edens and Nassef Sawiris in July and there was always the feeling that they would want their own man in the manager's office.

If chosen as their new manager Henry would follow fellow top-class former players Frank Lampard and Steven Gerrard into management. Lampard was appointed by Derby County — another club with an illustrious past — in the summer while Gerrard is in charge at one of Scotland's two biggest clubs, Glasgow Rangers.

Had A Good World Cup With Belgium

Henry, although a Frenchman, was Belgium's assistant manager as they made it through to the World Cup semi-finals in Russia, where they were ironically beaten by France.

In August he quit his role as a pundit on Sky Sports pundit to "fulfil my long-term ambition to become a football manager."

Villa is a massive club with huge potential and would certainly attract Henry, who spent most of his career playing under Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger.

But some experts think he does not have what it takes to get Villa back into the Premier League and challenging for the major honors.

"We don't know anything about Henry, we don't his strengths and weaknesses at this moment in time," TV pundit and former Villa player Stephen Warnock told the Birmingham Mail.

Warnock said he would prefer a proven name like Sam Allardyce. Other names who are in the frame are former Chelsea and Villa player John Terry, Shakhtar Donetsk manager Paulo Fonseca and former Manchester United boss David Moyes, who became the favorite after a flood of bets on Friday, October 3.

Whodunnit Over Cabbagegate

Bruce was fired only a few hours after a fan threw a cabbage at him on Tuesday, October 2, before the club's dramatic game at home to Preston. The cabbage-thrower has not yet been identified.

Villa were 2-0 up by half time but had a player sent off and were trailing 3-2 with only seconds remaining.

Yannick Bolasie, who was signed on loan from Everton in August, scrambled an equalizer but Glenn Whelan missed a penalty in the seventh minute of injury time.

It left Bruce with only one win in nine games.

In May he led the club to the final of the Championship play-offs but they lost to Fulham, who grabbed a coveted place in the Premier League.

Some Villa fans never forgave the 57-year-old for his spell as manager of their arch-rivals Birmingham City.

"Aston Villa can confirm that manager Steve Bruce and his assistants Colin Calderwood, Steve Agnew, Stephen Clemence and Gary Walsh are leaving their posts with immediate effect after having their contracts terminated. The process to appoint a new manager is under way," the club said in a statement on their website on Wednesday.

Aston Villa last won the English championship in 1981 — long before it became the Premier League — and the following year they beat Bayern Munich to win the European Cup, which later became the Champions' League.

But they have struggled in recent years and dropped out of the Premier League in 2016.

Caretaker manager Kevin MacDonald will be in charge for their trip to Millwall on Saturday, October 9.

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