It was the news that many Arsenal fans had feared but it was delivered in a manner that none expected, not even Arsenal. A large majority of Arsenal fans, myself included, really thought that Robin would sign a new deal and when faced with the awkward questions of ‘well if that’s the case why hasn’t he done it already?’ we simply shrugged. We had no answer. But still we felt sure. His wife came out and talked about how settled and happy their family was in London, his mother spoke about how well Arsenal had treated them all and his father threw his two euro in by stating that his son would never sign for another club in the Premier League.
Robin said nothing.
Talks happened, Euro’s came and went and still we had no news. Until yesterday.
It was an ill-thought out statement, or, if it wasn’t, it was callous. It made Robin’s position at Arsenal untenable, drove his transfer value down, and despite utterances of love for the club and fans and a desire to win trophies, his actions betrayed the tired sentiments he tried to cushion his blow with. He wanted to leave, Arsenal wouldn’t match his ambitions and he would not re-sign.
The club responded swiftly, perhaps too swiftly given that the majority of people who are ‘in the know’ said that the club had absolutely no clue that this statement was on its way from Robin. Arsenal were succinct, trying to claw back some of the value van Persie had wiped off his stock in one afternoon.
Whatever Robin’s motivations in issuing his statement in the way that he did, I doubt that he nor his advisors could have anticipated the anger with which it was met by Arsenal fans. From hero to hated in a few short hours is an efficiency even Robin couldn’t match with in front of goal. It wasn’t that he wanted to leave, it was the manner in which he was going about it. He tried to disguise it as doing the fans a favour by letting them know what was going on but it wasn’t his place to say anything, and, even if you concede that it was, to say that he did not agree with the direction the club was being taken is simply laughable. He is a player. He was shafting the club he claimed to love.
They say that there is no loyalty in football anymore but I disagree. You’d be hard pushed to find a club more loyal to injury prone players than Arsenal and just this very week our own manager said no to the country he loves very much to stay with the club he might just love a little bit more. When Arsene says he loves Arsenal you know he means it because he has stayed and tried to do what’s best for the club even when it would have been so much easier for him to walk away. Whether you agree that he has always succeeded or managed that is, of course, debatable, but you simply cannot question his loyalty to the club and to players who don’t deserve it.
We stood behind Robin when many fans were calling for him to be sold as he endured injury after injury. We all cringed every time he was tackled or went down afraid that ‘this’ time he wouldn’t get back up again so used to the sight of him being stretchered off. The true miracle of his season last year was not his goal scoring exploits but the fact that he managed to finally avoid serious injury.
So once again we have a player who has enjoyed one great season and has decided he needs more. He wants trophies, of course he wants to win them with Arsenal but it’s easier to leave than to stay and help build something and actually win trophies with Arsenal. He’s telling us he loves us as he walks out the door for another woman. Words and actions, only one of those matter. If he truly wanted to win trophies with Arsenal he would stay and try and make that happen.
Two top-class players signed before the transfer window even opens was not showing enough ambition apparently. Offering to shatter our wage structure was not enough. We aren’t foolish enough to ignore the fact that by driving down his transfer value Robin can ask for a larger salary when he moves.
I thought he was different and for that I am disappointed in both him and myself.
But Arsenal existed long before Robin came around as a petulant young adult bought for £2.75 million and moulded in to the man he is today. We will exist long after he is gone. He might regret leaving, he might not, but one thing is for sure, one day he will certainly come to regret the manner in which he went about it. Of course, he hasn’t actually gone, but it’s hard to see how he can play for the club again. What will his teammates think? How will the fans react? He has to go now, his actions have made that a certainty.
He could have left a legend but now he leaves with people whispering his name in the same sentence as ‘Nasri’ and ‘Adebayor’ and ‘Cole’ instead of with ‘Henry’ and ‘Bergkamp’. Perhaps that is harsh, but that is modern football today. Fans aren’t stupid and they know when a player is trying to sell them a cock and bull story.
We thought Robin was better than that.
Shame on him. Shame on us.
Here are some of the best comments which were left yesterday when the news was announced:
Dear RVP, if you are leaving this summer then thanks for everything
if you are staying for one more season, do your best
either way we are winning trophies next season – Mostafa
“Winning a trophy is better than a legend with no honours” – No, it’s really not, especially if it’s between Legend status at Arsenal and winning a trophy at Man City, PSG, Anzhi etc. Samir Nasri or Tom Finney? Van Persie has won honours in any case and, while Arsenal have gone through a drought, will very likely win trophies over the next 5 years. If he moves to Man City, even if he wins something for the next 5 years, at the end of his career, he will look back on his move from Arsenal with regret, mark my words. JH
Not gonna lie I’m disappointed. As a club we’ve paid him while he lay broken in tatters but unfortunately football is just a job nowadays, loyalty appears to have vanished from the game. I hope for our sake we can keep him for next season and really go for the jugular in order to get some silverware and show another departing captain what he’ll be missing at the grove. I love him to pieces, but we’ll move on together and progress as a club, we have done before and we will do again. Come on you reds! Mtcoop1
We are Arsenal, who the hell is Ashley vanNasrigas – Makks
I believe he will never have a season like he had this year ever again. And never become a legend in another club. Then when his career is done he might have gotten that trophy he now thinks is the most important thing in the world, but he will regret this very day. The chances for him to become a legend in his next club is very small. Only legends are immortal and thats something every human being wants with their lives in the end. A trophy somewhere wont do that for him and he wont realize this before its to late.
Maybe the next one out the door is Wenger. I think he’s really tired of developing footballers just to see them leave when they starts to deliver. RvP leaving might just be the last drop. The more think about it, this summer will be the perfect timing for him to leave the club. – Norwegian Gooner
sorry to say I feel Robin’s got too big for his boots. He won’t get the service from any other club. We bring players on then as soon as we make them captain they leave saying I love the club Really? Who believes it?. Sorry Robin you’re making a mistake but so would we if we kept you – daves raves
Very disappointed by Van Persie’s statement. Complete lack of gratitude and respect towards the club, i’m surprised he even had the slight amount of decency to follow Arsenal’s wishes to make no statement during Euro 2012. You can see why Holland never achieve anything, with the arrogant and selfish bastards they have in their team. I would fully understand if he had given us 5 years of great service, but the fact is he’s been one of the most injury prone players around during his Arsenal career and we’ve stuck by him and eventually helped him turn into one of the best strikers in the world last year, and after one excellent season, he turns his back on the club (no doubt to Man City). If he didn’t want to commit the rest of his career to Arsenal, fair enough, sign a 1 year extension with an agreement to be sold next season for no more than an agreed fee, if he no longer wants to stay, but he’s now forcing the club’s hand and will have to be sold for less than his true value. Deplorable from a player who “loves the club and fans”. Arsenal have just signed 2 of the best strikers in Europe last season and sold no first team players, so don’t use “the club’s direction” as an excuse for leaving, when you’ll only be joining a team with a sugar daddy whose achievements will always be tarnished. Van Persie will regret this in years to come, he could have become a Club Legend at one of the top sides in Europe, but will instead become a whore elsewhere. Truly, how much is a medal worth at Man City in comparison to a lifelong legacy at Arsenal? JH
Time for Arsenal to make an emphatic statement by holding RVP to his contract. Let him backup Podolski and Giroud while they acclimate to the PL. Such a shame that for all the faith and loyalty AW has shown his players, they do not return the favour. No respect towards AW, Arsenal or the fans. RVP is a legend no more. Divecage
If you’ve been having problems accessing this site on your work computer using the URLS globalgooners.com and gossip.globalgooners.com should sort that problem for you.
Get your free LadyArse app here for Android, BlackBerry and Windows phone [iPhone coming soon]
Get your free Arsenal wallpaper, Facebook covers and Twitter headers here