French football icon Thierry Henry has revealed that legendary Nigerian defender Taribo West was the toughest opponent of his career.
Considered to be one of the best African defenders of his generation, West was a physically commanding and powerful central defender having played in top leagues in Germany, England, Italy, and France during his playing days.
During his time in the French Ligue 1 playing for AJ Auxerre in the 90s, West faced a young Henry, who was on the books of AS Monaco and the Frenchman went on to become one of the greatest strikers of all time.
“Toughest as an indirect opponent? Or just a guy you don’t like to play against? Paul Scholes,” Henry said on CBSS Sports Golazo.
“For direct opponent, I would go back in the days – Taribo West.
“Because [at Auxerre], they did man-marking. He followed you everywhere, even in the dressing room.”
Henry also faced West in the Italian Serie A as they were playing for Juventus and Inter Milan respectively in 1999 as the two Italian giants battled for silverware.
Having retired from professional football in 2008, West is now a pastor in the Nigerian city of Lagos.