Robin van Persie: Is He, or Isn’t He?
Right, how are you liking the roller coaster ride that Arsenal fans have been on for the past 12 months? With no end in sight, Gunners fans have been jerked, kicked and prodded by the club and several players, most notably Cesc Fabregas and Samir Nasri last summer, and now, just when things began to steady themselves in the wake of the now famous van Persie good-bye letter (more or less), Sky Sports worked another bend into the tracks, just for good measure.
It was reported by Sky Sports yesterday that RvP may in fact be reversing his stance on whether to sign with Arsenal or not. As was summed up brilliantly by the wildly popular “Arseblog” a couple of days ago, the Dutchman, or quite possibly some bloke publicist, published the letter on his website stating the striker had no intentions on re-signing with the club. But that wasn’t what caused the most permanent damage. Here is a particularly troubling part:
“I personally have had a great season but my goal has been to win trophies with the team and to bring the club back to its glory days. Out of my huge respect for Mr. Wenger, the players and the fans I don’t want to go into any details, but unfortunately in this meeting it has again become clear to me that we in many aspects disagree on the way Arsenal FC should move forward.“
Now, I am a big RvP supporter, BUT why should he have a say in how they move forward? Is it Robin van Persie who knows what’s best for the club, or Wenger who has managed for as long as Persie has been alive? Oh, and Wenger just happened to play for 12 years himself and holds a degree in Economics – not bad credentials, yes? Is he not openly challenging Wenger by saying that they ”…disagree on the way Arsenal FC should move forward”? For me, that is too big and permanent-sounding to retract.
I’m not going to go any further in dissecting what millions of football writers have already done (some well, some not so much) – I elaborated on the letter last week. With yesterday’s news reported by Sky Sports in mind, you likely belong to one of two camps. Either you believe van Persie’s letter for what it was – a good-bye letter to fans which shifts blame from himself (who tries to appear with hands-tied) for wanting to win championships, which he believes he can’t do with Arsenal FC soon enough, or you liken his letter to the Wayne Rooney ploy of two seasons ago, where he apparently demanded a transfer out of Manchester, only to sign a new, hefty contract relatively soon afterward.
Though he didn’t mention Podolski or Giroud directly, I think that their signings are playing on RvP’s mind. Really, if he could see that the club has in fact invested considerably more than it has in a long while, he might be able to realize he could be part of something special. As good as Podolski and Giroud are (and I say this with all sincerity), Arsenal only challenge for the PL title if the clubs retains its #10.
For me, although I would love to hold on to the hope of him actually re-signing with the club, I have to think his time is done. Further, and I have absolutely no proof to back me up (call it a hunch, if you will), I think the Sky Sports story was a non-story designed to provoke readers at a time when there is little “big” news to talk about. I guess I can’t blame them, as I am writing on what they wrote yesterday, so what does that make me? That was rhetorical – be nice!
Until tomorrow, lads.