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By ESPN Staff
Dec 7, 2006

Vieira defends under-fire Henry

Patrick Vieira has come to the defence of France team-mate Thierry Henry following reported criticism of the striker in the French press by other members of the national team.

Les Bleus skipper Vieira claimed the critics, who were speaking under condition of anonymity, had created an 'unbearable' situation in their remarks about the 29-year-old Arsenal player.

Internazionale midfielder Vieira, 30, told L'Equipe: 'This general suspicion is unbearable because it is based upon anonymous words which are impossible to prove.

'If (the criticisms) had been true, I would have said nothing and stayed in my corner knowing in my own heart it was true.

'But it's all false.'

Since Zinedine Zidane quit football after the 2006 World Cup final, Henry is seen by many as the senior player in the France dressing room.