van Persie Played Only 60.3% Of Games In 8 Years
As the fallout of Robin van Persie`s statement of intent to decline to sign a new contract for The Gunners (meaning it`s likely he will leave) continues, there are people with the opinion that Arsenal fans are being a little unreasonable with their reactions.
Of course some fans take it a little too far on occasion, however the majority of Gooners are well within their rights to feel a little disgruntled.
The timing and wording of Robin`s statement is one of the reasons Arsenal fans aren`t best please. It appears to be a thinly veiled attempt at forcing Arsene`s hand into allowing the Dutchman a move away from the club. Not cool.
My personal opinion is that I don`t believe van Persie should be castrated simply for wanting to leave the club, things haven`t gone well for us in recent years, yes we`ve qualified for the Champions League for a gazzilion years running, but one Carling Cup final aside, we haven`t really looked like winning a trophy. van Persie is a winner and wants to win silverware, you can`t blame him for that.
However surely it`s not too much to ask for a little bit of respect and loyalty is it?
I`ve seen many rival fans commenting on the situation and a common sentiment expressed is that Robin "doesn`t owe Arsenal anything".
Being a professional footballer is a privilege, it doesn`t just take talent and hard work to become a professional footballer living the life of luxury, it takes the loyalty of the fans of the individual clubs. Without that loyalty, football would cease to be as a multi-billion pound spectacle. It`s not just about the player and what the player wants.
Or at least it shouldn`t be.
The biggest complaint about this whole sordid affair is that van Persie`s statement claimed that his goal had been to "win trophies with the team and to bring the club back to its glory days", yet his attempt to bring the glory days back to Arsenal is to leave after what appears to be the first time he`s managed to play more than 45 games in one season for the club in his Arsenal career.
Arsene Wenger has shown tremendous loyalty to van Perise throughout his career. Through the false rape charge to his constant injuries, and what does he get in return? Very little.
Robin van Persie is a world class player, of that there is no doubt, but the fact is that in only three of his 8 seasons at Arsenal has he managed to crack the 20 goal per season barrier (20, 22 and an impressive 37 last season).
In the 8 years van Persie has played for Arsenal, he`s only managed to feature in 60.3% of the competitive games for the club. 462 games played by Arsenal whilst the Dutchman only took to the field 279 times.
True, some of those games were in the Carling Cup of which van Persie might not have played, but that number of games is negligible to say the least.
Of course van Persie didn`t want to be injured and would have preferred to be on the pitch, but that doesn`t help the club when we can`t count on him for half the time, then the one season he manages to stay injury free and scores a lot of goals he rewards himself with a transfer to another club (probably).
It would have been easy for Arsene Wenger to have got rid of van Persie years ago, but he stood by him, the fans stood by him and sung his name. With his injury record it would have been very unlikely any of the top teams would have taken him, indeed even though we knew he was a great player he wasn`t much sought after .
Arsene helped shape the career of van Persie and got little in the way of thanks.