Former Arsenal striker Thierry Henry has been appointed as head coach of Monaco until June 2021.
The 41-year-old Frenchman, who had been Belgium’s assistant manager, began his professional career at Monaco and helped them win Ligue 1 in 1997.
The club are third from bottom in Ligue 1 and sacked manager Leonardo Jardim on Thursday.
“It seems like fate that I will begin my managerial career here,” said Henry, who is Arsenal’s record goalscorer.
— AS Monaco 🇲🇨 (@AS_Monaco) October 13, 2018
The former Juventus, Barcelona and New York Red Bulls player was linked with Aston Villa in recent weeks and said he received some “very attractive offers” over the last few months.
“Monaco will always be close to my heart,” he added. “I’m incredibly excited to be given this opportunity but now the hard work must begin.”
Monaco have won just once all season in all competitions. In Ligue 1 they have six points from nine games with five defeats and they have lost both games in the Champions League.
Henry’s first game in charge will be against Strasbourg in the league on 20 October, before a Champions League tie with Club Brugge four days later.
Portuguese boss Jardim was appointed in 2014 and led the club to the French title in 2017, their first since 2000.
The 44-year-old also guided Monaco to the Champions League semi-finals in 2016-17 and helped develop players such as Paris St-Germain forward Kylian Mbappe, Atletico Madrid’s Thomas Lemar, and Manchester City pair Bernardo Silva and Benjamin Mendy.
Henry was with Belgium on Friday as they beat Switzerland 2-1 in the Nations League. In July he helped the team finish third at the World Cup.
He started his career at Monaco in 1994 under former Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger, before joining Juventus in 1999.
After just one year in Italy, he signed for the Gunners and went on to win two Premier League titles and two FA Cups in eight years in north London.
Then came a move to Barcelona, where he won the treble of La Liga, Copa del Rey and Champions League in 2008-09.
In 2010 he signed for Major League Soccer side Red Bulls, where he spent five seasons and also had a two-month loan spell back at Arsenal in early 2012.
Henry was a World Cup winner with France in 1998 and won the European Championship two years later, scoring 51 goals in 123 appearances for Les Bleus.
He retired as a player in December 2014 to work as a television pundit, before joining Belgium’s coaching staff in 2016.
“His knowledge of football, his passion for the game, his high standards and his commitment to our colours make his nomination a reality,” Monaco chief executive Vadim Vasilyev said.
“Thierry is both aware of the task ahead and eager to start his new job. He can count on our trust and all our support to bring a new dynamic to the team and carry out its mission. “
Patrick Kwame Ampadu, a coach at Arsenal’s academy and father of Chelsea and Wales player Ethan Ampadu, will join Henry’s coaching staff, alongside Benfica Under-23 coach Joao Carlos Valado Tralhao.