NEW YORK (AFP) - French national and former English Premier League star Thierry Henry scored a goal in his American football debut but it wasn't enough to get his New York Red Bulls past Tottenham Hotspur on Thursday.
Robbie Keane and Gareth Bale scored as Hotspur rallied with two second half goals to beat the Red Bulls 2-1 in an international friendly between Henry's Major League Soccer side and the English Premier League club at the Red Bull Arena.
"I would say that the reception was tremendous every time I touched the ball," Henry said.
Henry scored in the 24th minute of the first half for the Red Bulls. He made a near-post run past Verdan Corluka and then dove feet first in the box to deflect a cross from Estonian national team player Joel Lindpere past goalkeeper Carlo Cudicini.
Keane equalled in the 62nd minute, tapping the ball into an open net after Andros Townsend's corner kick was misjudged by 'keeper Greg Sutton. Bale scored 10 minutes later.
"He was a tough player over there," Keane said of Henry. "I'm sure he'll be a tough player over here, as well."
Henry's arrival in the USA follows his release from Spanish club Barcelona and coincided with Henry's confirmation that he has retired from international football after making 123 appearances and scoring a record 51 goals for France.
Henry, who turns 33 next month, signed a four and a half year deal with the Red Bulls. He is the latest in a list of aging veteran football stars lured to American soil with a chance to extend their careers and the promise of a lucrative contract.
Henry, a former World Cup and European champion with France, is the highest-profile player to join MLS since David Beckham signed with Los Angeles three years ago.
"He'll be a massive hit here in New York I'm sure," Spurs manager Harry Redknapp said. "He's a world-class player still. He could play on any team in the Premier League in England. He's still good enough."
Playing his first match since France was eliminated from the World Cup with a loss to South Africa on June 22, Henry was received a loud ovation when introduced in front of the crowd of 20,312.
The newest Red Bull member clapped his hands above his head to salute the crowd.
It didn't take long for Henry to impress. He had some deft exchanges with Lindpere and executed a freeing backheel pass and a bicycle kick that went wide.
Some fans also like the fact Henry took public transportation to the game.
"I was on the PATH train with my friends and with all the fans," Henry said. "For me, it was the quickest way to come to the game, and that's how I came. It was cool."
In Spurs, Henry was facing an old rival. He starred for Arsenal from 1999-07 and said last week he doesn't like to even say the name of Tottenham.
Henry will have to wait to see what he can do with new teammate Juan Pablo Angel, New Yorks' top player. Angel missed the match because of an ankle injury.
Thursday's friendly was part of an exhibition tournament dubbed the New York Challenge.
In other matches in the friendly competition, Manchester City play Sporting Lisbon on Friday, while on Sunday Man City plays Red Bulls and Spurs face Sporting.
|Parreira: Mandela was ´a god´ to South Africans|
|Colombia Primera A Wrap: Atletico Nacional reach final|
|Alonso the key for Real, says Ancelotti|
|Karanka rejected Mourinho, Chelsea|
|Garde left disappointed by home draw|
|FIFA should reconsider seedings, says Prandelli|
|Mihajlovic given selection headaches|
|Tributes flow for Mandela|
|Matthaus: Germany ´definitely´ World Cup contenders|
|Zidane hails ´monstrous´ Ronaldo|
|Ligue 1: Lyon 1 Toulouse 1|
|Coppa Italia: Sampdoria 4 Verona 1|
|UAE Pro League Wrap: Al Shabab fail to capitalise on Al Ahli slip up|
|No plan B for Sao Paulo stadium - Blatter|
|Premier League Preview: Crystal Palace v Cardiff City|
|Premier League Preview: West Brom v Norwich City|
|Pulis eyes quality over quantity|
|Martino will not rush Messi recovery|
|Ligue 1 Preview: Enyeama closing on record, Nantes face tough test|
|FIFA World Cup winners to pocket $35m|
|Premier League: Southampton v Manchester City|
|Premier League Preview: Stoke City v Chelsea|
|Footballers charged in match-fixing probe|
|Suarez vindicated for staying at Liverpool, says Rodgers|
|Klopp targets ´result machines´ Leverkusen|
|Premier League Preview: Liverpool v West Ham|
|Pardew expects Manchester United reaction|
|Premier League Preview: Sunderland v Tottenham|
|Hamren extends Sweden deal|
|Del Nido sentenced to seven years|
|Bundesliga Preview: Borussia Dortmund v Bayer Leverkusen|
|Hughton: Norwich must forget Suarez show|
|Tomkins eager to face Liverpool strikeforce|
|Platini talks up sin bin proposal|
|Ronaldo keen to avoid World Cup favourites|
|Ligue 1 Preview: Paris Saint-Germain v Sochaux|
|Premier League Preview: Manchester United v Newcastle United|
|Martino accepts responsibility for Barca defeats|
|Dossena confident ahead of Spurs test|
|Montpellier coach Fernandez resigns|
|Wenger: Too early to dismiss United challenge|
|Mackay hails tireless Campbell|
|Robben ruled out for six weeks with knee injury|
|Berbatov committed to Fulham, claims Meulensteen|
|Villas-Boas lauds Lloris for bouncing back|
|Bundesliga Preview: Werder Bremen v Bayern Munich|
|Golden boy Pogba must keep his head down, says Conte|
|Pellegrini tips Aguero to extend goal glut|
|Landreau proud of Ligue 1 landmark|
|Moyes unsure over Van Persie return|
|Suarez grounded over Liverpool prospects|
|Robben set for scans on knee gash|
|J.League Preview: Hiroshima can still defend title|
|Blanc hails Evian´s ´heart´ after shock PSG loss|
|Copa Sudamericana: Ponte Preta 1 Lanus 1|
|Pruis denies safety concerns for Brazil 2014|
|World Cup stadiums will be ready - Brazil´s sports minister|
|West Brom spirit pleases Clarke|
|Pellegrini enjoys away tonic|
|Coppa Italia Wrap: Inter survive scare to advance|
|Ligue 1 Wrap: PSG suffer shock loss, Landreau makes history|
|Mackay hails ´brave´ Cardiff point|
|Laudrup delighted with Shelvey flexibility|
|Eredivisie Wrap: Heerenveen, Go Ahead leave it late|
|Seedorf tips Brazil to win World Cup|
|Hughton salutes Suarez, slams Norwich defending|
|Rodgers hails ´incredible´ Suarez after four-goal salvo|
|No excuses from frustrated Moyes|
|Pardew has ref rage over Webb after Swansea loss|
|Football League Wrap: Derby go fourth, Wigan lose again|
|Meulensteen bullish after Spurs defeat|
|Poyet: Chelsea will win the title|
|Pochettino bemoans defensive display|
|Lambert hails quality finishing|
|Forest reveal alleged Chalobah abuse|
|Hughes: Stoke need to sharpen up|
|DFB Pokal Wrap: Bayern, Bayer both progress to the quarter-finals|
|Villas-Boas delighted to end winless run|
|Bruce happy to avoid ´embarrassing´ Arsenal loss|
|Martinez proud as Everton end hoodoo|
|Wenger hails Bendtner quality|
|Mourinho marvels at Hazard showing|
|Eredivisie Preview: Vitesse, Ajax look to extend unbeaten runs|
|Premier League: West Brom 2 Manchester City 3|
|Ligue 1: Evian 2 Paris Saint-Germain 0|
|Premier League: Fulham 1 Tottenham 2|
|Premier League: Manchester United 0 Everton 1|
|Premier League: Southampton 2 Aston Villa 3|
|Premier League: Swansea City 3 Newcastle United 0|
|Premier League: Liverpool 5 Norwich City 1|
|Premier League: Stoke City 0 Cardiff City 0|
|Premier League: Sunderland 3 Chelsea 4|
|Rakitic wary of Sevilla away-day slump|
|Garcia hails Totti as ´one of the best´|
|Reina would welcome Barcelona return|
|Garde calls for Lyon to become more mature|
|Pique rejects crisis talk|
|Kramer keen for Monchengladbach to maintain focus|
|Ince blasts ill-disciplined Blackpool|
|Delph loving life under Lambert|
|Courtois seeks Chelsea talks over future|
|Valbuena out for up to six weeks|
|Iraola signs new Athletic deal|
|Berbatov keen on Fulham exit|
|Borini up for Chelsea test|
|Rodgers asks Spanish pair to lift Liverpool|
|Inverness appoint Hughes|
|Jaaskelainen annoyed with Palace loss|
|Klopp hails Dortmund display|
|Pulis tips Chamakh to shine|
|Walker fired up for Fulham trip|
|Enyeama lauds collective Lille effort|
|Copa del Rey Preview: Atletico open against Sant Andreu, Barcelona face Cartagena|
|Serie A Preview: Bologna v Juventus|
|Di Natale needs more help, says Guidolin|
|Prandelli: Totti retirement backflip possible|
|Points all that matter, says Lille president Seydoux|
|Ranieri harbours no hopes of Monaco catching PSG|
|Liga MX Preview: Herrera´s America out to break winless run in semi-finals|
|West Ham ´hard done by´ after goal disallowed|
|´Brazuca´ revealed as the official World Cup ball|
|Garde puts heat on Lyon to respond to PSG pummelling|
|Blatter backs Brazil to be ready|
|Stranded Belounis furious with FIFA inaction|
|Championship Wrap: Wednesday stun Leicester as Yeovil, Barnsley also win|
|A-League Preview: Styles collide as Adelaide host Brisbane|