Thierry Henry: Calls for controversial match to be replayed, says he is not a cheat

Handball villain Thierry Henry has called for the controversial Ireland/France game to be replayed.

The French star striker said a replay would be the "fairest solution" after his handball set up the goal which dumped Ireland out of the World Cup.

Heny insisted he was not a cheat and said his handball had been an "instinctive reaction."

"The fairest solution would be to replay the game but it is not in my control," he said after FIFA turned down Ireland's request for a replay.

"Naturally I feel embarrassed at the way that we won and feel extremely sorry for the Irish who definitely deserve to be in South Africa," Henry added.

"I have said at the time and I will say again that 'yes' I handled the ball. I am not a cheat and never have been. It was an instinctive reaction to a ball that was coming extremely fast in a crowded penalty area.

"As a footballer you do not have the luxury of the television to slow the pace of the ball down 100 times to be able to make a conscious decision.

"People are viewing a slow motion version of what happened and not what I or any other footballer faces in the game. If people look at it in full speed you will see that it was an instinctive reaction."

Henry's fellow countryman and former boss, Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger, said France should offer to replay the game regardless of the FIFA decision.

"For the sense of justice it is quite embarrassing to see," he said.

"I think even France is embarrassed," he said.

"We didn't play well at all and we won the game and won the qualification with a goal that was not a goal."