The last time Martin Jol ran into Thierry Henry on a football field he made a patsy out of a Canadian journeyman named Paul Stalteri before sweeping home an 84th-minute finish to ensure Arsenal drew with Tottenham Hotspur at Highbury, their old home.
When asked if this memory of Arsenal's record goalscorer – when he was in charge at Spurs in April 2006 – was a good one, the Fulham manager said: "No, he outplayed Stalteri and scored the equaliser."
Henry has been offered a two-month contract to re-join Arsenal on loan as Arsène Wenger takes his team to Fulham on Monday after Jol saw his team draw at Norwich City due to Simeon Jackson's late headed equaliser. Of Henry, Jol added: "I feel for Arsenal fans – it is fantastic. He is a legend. I played against him with Spurs [many times] and he was always making the difference as a player."
Although Henry is 34 and his lightning pace is not what it was, Jol hopes the Frenchman has lost his ability to turn a match. Henry may not be in the XI that takes the field at Craven Cottage but he may well be a formidablepresence on the bench – he is due to sign on Monday . "He will sit behind me and we will have to focus on the game. The last time we did well against them and hopefully we can do the same, Jol said of the 1-1 draw at the Emirates in November.
Jol is not surprised that Wenger has decided to re-sign a player whose legacy is 226 goals and a statue on the walkway outside the Emirates. Jol said: "He was training there but I don't think a lot of people saw that coming because a couple of months they said they weren't thinking about it. But if he trained with us I would probably ask him as well."
Jol and Wenger have had their differences in the past: Arsenal's manager accused the Dutchman of "lying" following a touchline confrontation during that draw at Highbury five years ago, when the Frenchman became furious as Emmanuel Eboué and Gilberto Silva were injured in the lead up to Robbie Keane's opener, but Spurs did not put the ball out.
Then, Wenger said: "Their first goal was a disgrace. They lie when they say they didn't see it." Now, Jol says of their relations: "I met him before a couple of times in Switzerland [at coaching conventions] so there is no problem there. The rivalry between Tottenham and Arsenal is a big thing, but Monday is [also] a London derby."
Bobby Zamora and Andrew Johnson were absent due to injury for the trip to Carrow Road, in which Orlando Sá scored Fulham's goal. Each has had a fractious relationship with the manager and both appear destined to leave in January.
"That is all speculation," said Jol. "Nobody told me anything. Nobody contacted us. Zamora and Johnson are injured for the last week. Hopefully everybody will be all right and we will train as usual and we will see what happens on Monday."
For Paul Lambert, despite Norwich sitting in 11th place after an impressive first half of the season, mere survival is the goal. "Stay in the league, that's the one to do," he said. "Hopefully we can do that. It's been really tough but we've made a fight of it. The lads need help [by recruiting in the window], we'll have to wait and see money-wise what's happening."
Lambert will take his team to Queens Park Rangers on Monday. "They're a very good side and every game we've had against them has been really tough in the Championship. I expect no different."
Man of the Match Orlando Sá (Fulham)