This morning news broke that Robin van Persie would not be joining Arsenal on their pre-season tour of Asia as he will be working on his fitness back at London Colney. The Arsenal captain has forced his clubs hand in the most unprofessional manner and now with what appears as a refusal to join his teammates can only mean one thing: Robin van Persie already has one foot out of the door.
Bidding for Robin van Persie
The three clubs who are currently bidding for the Dutchman are Manchester United, Manchester City and Juventus but all offers up until now have been refused as none are remotely close to Arsenal’s valuation and request for their star striker. The Italian champions, Juventus, are Robin’s preferred destination and are probably most likely to meet the valuation of the striker as they need him most. Their lack of a quality finisher and all-round striker makes van Persie the ideal candidate for Juve. The Old Lady has had her hand in her purse quite a lot already this summer but if she dug a little deeper she will find the extra funds. Having already spent around €40m this summer on first team players they are after a star signing to help retain the league title as well as help their European campaign. Arsenal would also prefer to see their man play in Europe rather than become a direct threat to them domestically.
Aresnal in a position of weakness
The Gunners are not simply rolling over and letting their captain walk away easily; they have resigned to the fact he will be leaving but it must be on terms that suit the club. If a suitable offer does not arrive Arsenal are not scared to let van Persie see the remaining 11 months on his contract out. They may not be looking to play him but they would let him sit in the reserve team as a punishment for acting so poorly. He has attempted to put the club that gave him everything in a very compromising situation regarding his transfer fee and availability. By publicly declaring he would not sign a new contract and wanted to move on (reading between the lines) he automatically put Arsenal in a position of weakness. The lack of grace and respect for the club has been likened to that of new Arsenal figure of hate, Samir Nasri, but in reality his situation is very similar to the previous Arsenal captain, Cesc Fabregas.
Arsenal don’t want to see their man leave after such an excellent season but the matter of the fact is that the club have faced bigger loses in recent times. Last summer saw Arsenal lose a number of starting players and they managed to fight back and actually finish higher in the league than previous years. The players need not worry and just consider their soon-to-be ex-captain a figure of the past and look toward the future. The club had already anticipated their captain’s will to leave and reacted early by bringing in two international strikers to replace him. The sooner this transfer saga is over, the better. The club now need to focus on their pre-season tour, match fitness and rallying together to be stronger than last season. There is a lot of work to be done.