Robin Van Persie the Right Man for Juve?
It is pretty much yesterday’s news that Juventus had trouble scoring goals in Serie A during the 2011-2012 season despite winning the Scudetto. Now that the Old Lady is back in the Champions League, she desperately needs to reinforce the squad in order to take on the best of Europe as well as continue to challenge for the Italian championship. The recent focus of directors Giuseppe Marotta and Fabio Paratici as well as head coach Antonio Conte during this transfer campaign has been to find a guarantee upfront who will pop in goals when the opportunities arise.
One of the most discussed frontrunners is Holland and Arsenal striker Robin Van Persie. RvP had a fantastic season with Arsenal scoring 37 goals in all competitions, which has been by far his best year as a Gunner. There is no doubt that the Dutch International is a great talent capable of scoring goals with his head and his skilled feet. When called upon in the EPL and Champions League, he has not disappointed – well, this year at least. He has been injured in past seasons and was not able to put up such a large number.
Is he the right man for Antonio Conte’s tactics? Conte loves versatile players and prefers to have those who sacrifice themselves for the better of the team, running back to defend as well as putting in 100% effort when attacking, thus requiring a lot of running. Does RvP fall in this category? The Dutchman seems to have more characteristics of a centre forward similar to Zlatan Ibrahimovic. Although a quality striker, he is not the ideal versatile player Conte prefers.
Arsenal’s established price tag thus far has been €30 million and the Juve target would like an annual salary of €7 million per season plus €1 million in bonuses, which is something that the Old Lady is not entirely willing to pay. The transfer fee is high considering he is 29 years old. The Bianconeri are hoping to land Van Persie for less than the asking price and are willing to pay the player €5.5 million a year, which is not a bad deal. The Bianconeri administration will be watching the centre forward closely while he represents the Netherlands in EURO 2012. Much is expected this time for RVP to perform and prove he is capable of leading his team to glory.
Recently, major hints of RVP’s decision to join Juventus have been dropped by his father, Bob Van Persie, who stated that there is no point for his son to join Spanish giants Real Madrid or Barcelona as there is too much competition and no room at these clubs to grow. He has also ruled out a move to rivals Manchester City seeing that Robin prefers not to play for another English club. Therefore, this leaves Juventus as the most probable option at the moment.
Juve is keeping all of their options open as they prepare offers to persuade other targets to join the cause. The Italian champions are showing a lot of interest in Edinson Cavani of Napoli. Italian newspaper Tuttosport reported this morning that the Old Lady has offered Napoli €40 million cash plus forward Alessandro Matri for the Uruguayan’s services – a very steap but much younger option as he is only 25 years old. Cavani is perhaps the more ideal candidate since he has already demonstrated his versatility for Napoli this season playing as both a striker and on the left side of a 3-man attack, and he knows the Italian league very well. As shown in the Champions League against Chelsea, he is also a player who sacrifices himself as he runs back to help the defence as well. He has scored 28 goals in all competitions this year.
No matter who Juventus ends up signing, he will no doubt be a great addition to the squad and will most likely provide the goals the Old Lady has lacked last season. Although, Robin Van Persie is an older but more affordable option, having to pay a little extra for an extremely motivated and equally talented individual in Edinson Cavani is the better way to go in my opinion for the reasons stated above. As a bonus, it will weaken a direct competitor for next year’s Scudetto.
Lastly, as a Juventus supporter, it is great to see such high calibre players being linked with the Old Lady again.
…and that is the last word.
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