Morning folks. I’m the bearer of (alleged) bad news today.
If you’ve not read the story featured in The Mirror, here are the main parts of intrigue and sorrow:
It was with great regret that Van Persie informed Arsenal that at the age of 28 he believes the time is right to bring his eight-year association with the club to an end.
He has picked up just one solitary FA Cup winners’ medal in his time at Arsenal and, after netting 30 Premier League goals this season, Van Persie is eager to finish his career with more silverware.
This is not a financial decision. He did not even allow Arsenal to get as far as offering the £130,000-a-week new deal they had drawn up. Even increasing those figures is unlikely to do any good.
Now, before I get into opinions and such, I’d like to state that I rate the validity of this story at 40-60 against it being true. For all the information it gives, it offers little in the way of evidence or direct quotation. For all intents and purposes; it’s nothing more than unimaginative, speculative drivel designed to attract those of us hungry for information. It will do exactly that, and do it well.
However, it cannot be ignored. There is enough of a possibility that’s it’s accurate. Let’s be honest here; it’s certainly a likely scenario.
So for a moment, I’ll assume that it is true.
First of all; I would like for Robin to come out an explain his decision – one way or the other. If he wants to leave to pursue a new chapter in his career, I wouldn’t begrudge him that for a second. His form and captaincy have both been nothing short of phenomenal. I’d wish him all the best. It’s the waiting and procrastination that irks me so. At the very least, he owes those of us that worshipped him, and the club that supported him through countless injuries, a reasonable explanation.
Secondly, if his mind is made up; sell him. Put a price on him, and offer him to as many clubs on the continent as possible. £25m, and he’s yours. Keeping him to the final year of his contract is pointless. He won’t be 100% committed to Arsenal, and the wages he earns should go to someone who is. Do it as soon as possible. We made huge blunders with Nasri and Fabregas by playing an ill-advised waiting game, and our early season form suffered. Those mistakes cannot be repeated.
Lastly, let’s go out and replace him. We cannot afford to wait until his transfer is completed. Let’s go after the boss’ targets, and get them. No buying on the cheap, no haggling for prices. None of that. Get them in plenty of time for pre-season. If Robin leaves, we’ll need at least another striker and an excellent attack-minded midfielder to fill the void. We’ll need to splash the cash, too. Arsenal will need to make a huge statement of intent, not only to appease the fans, but to show the rest of the league we still mean business.
That’s my opinion on the whole situation. Of course, if I had any say-so in the matter, I’d love him to stay. At the end of the day, when my rational head comes into play; I don’t believe anything I read until it’s accompanied by undoubtable confirmation. The Mirror piece has none of that. We all knew this was coming over the summer. We all knew the saga would run and run. The final resolution remains a mystery to all of us.
My advice would be simply to remember this; We are Arsenal. We are not Robin van Persie. His departure would be made out to be the end of the club. It wouldn’t be anything of the sort. We survived the loss of plenty before him, we would survive him just the same.
Thanks for reading, you beautiful bastards. I look forward to reading some of your views in the comments. You can follow me on Twitter @_ArmchairGooner