King of Goals: Thierry Henry sets New York Red Bulls' combined goals & assists record

Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Against Chicago Fire, Thierry Henry got his name on the score sheet for the 79th time in his RBNY career to date - and that's more often, be it for a goal or an assist, than anyone who has ever played for this team.

If this turns out to be Thierry Henry's last season as a New York Red Bull, his place in the club's history is already assured: he won a trophy.

He is also scattered all over the team's statistical records (meticulously and invaluably maintained by metrofanatic.com), but he'll may well stop short of being top of of any of RBNY's major individual achievement lists.

He'd need another three or four seasons to break Mike Petke's all-time appearances record (197 games and 16,561 minutes played) - so probably not. It's doubtful he'll get the 18 goals needed to surpass Juan Pablo Angel's all-time goals scored record (62) between now and the end of the season. It is possible, even likely, that he gets the six assists he needs to break the club record for goals created in a career, currently shared by Amado Guevara and Tab Ramos (39), but there can be no guarantee.

On Saturday May 10th, 2014, however, Thierry Henry did achieve something no one else had managed to before in a RBNY career: he contributed to his 79th goal for the club.


Yes, combined goals and assists isn't a record that usually gets any attention. Assists are a bit of stretch anyway, since MLS will acknowledge up to two assist-makers for a goal.

Still, it's an indication of closer involvement in the offensive output of the team than most, and if you combine assists and goals, you get a snapshot of the number of times a player has made a direct contribution to the goals scored while he was on the pitch.

There are some who attach a points value to goals and assists, and look to mark this contribution with a weighted metric that values a goal scored over one created. It's not a bad system, just not the one in play here. A goal is a goal. Sometimes, the scorer does most of the work:


Sometimes, the guy setting it up is most significant:


The statistics tell us Thierry Henry has contributed to 79 goals: 45 he scored himself, and he tallied his 34th assist on Bradley Wright-Phillips' first goal against Chicago Fire.

His most recent assist pushed him to sole-ownership of this particular record. Amado Guevara scored 39 goals and assisted on 39 - 78 in total. Juan Pablo Angel had 62 goals and 15 assists for a career total of 77. Next on the list is Clint Mathis (45 scored, 26 assisted) with 71. No one else gets close (Giovanni Savarese's career total is next: 57 - 44 scored and 13 assisted).

It's not an insignificant record: it means Henry has been directly involved in more RBNY goals than anyone else who has ever played for this team. And he presumably has a few more ahead of him.

So well done, Titi. We know you don't care: you'd rather have won this week than had anything to do with any of the goals. But congratulations anyway - celebrate by taking the record a little further away from the pack next week, eh?


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