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Thursday, August 16, 2012

Van Persie’s Exit Extends Arsenal’s Title Drought for another Year – At Least

It's goodbye Arsenal for Van
There’s a common joke on social media about former Arsenal players who have moved on from the club under the frustration of not having won a title over the past seven years only to do so in their first season at their new clubs. Samir Nasri, Cesc Fabregas, Gael Clichy and even Emmanuel Adebayor are just but examples of players who have donned the Arsenal jersey over the past seven seasons where they won nothing, first Highburys, then Emirates but got a title after moving on to new clubs.

Fabregas already has 4 trophies with Barcelona in just over a year with the Catalan giants. Clichy and Nasri were part of the Manchester City team that won the premier league title last season and added the season-opening Community Shield, if you care to count that.

Is the grass always greener outside the Emirates? Perhaps. The latest player who seems to have realized this is Robin Van Persie. The “Flying Dutchman” is the latest big-name player to give Wenger’s never-ending, never-successful revolution a wide berth. After spending 8 years with the Gunners, the 29-year-old finally called it quits deciding against adding a few more years on his expiring contract.

That he would eventually leave Arsenal to go to a club which would give him better chances of winning titles far superior than the 2004 Community Shield and 2005 FA Cup he won with Arsenal was never in doubt. That the club he would join when he decides to make the move would be bitter rivals Manchester United was unthinkable.

But it has happened.

Arsene Wenger’s summer acquisitions gave all indications that his most priced asset last season was going to play for any other club but Arsenal come the new season. In came Lukas Podolski and Olivier Giroud from German side Cologne and French Ligue 1 reigning champions Montpellier respectively.  

By the time the two had their medicals and paperwork done and dusted early in the transfer window, Van Persie had already expressed his desire to leave the 13-time premier league champions. Juventus and Manchester City were the teams earlier tipped to get him signing on the dotted lines.

They both pulled out. It actually even looked like the golden boot winner of the past season would stick with Arsenal until the cookie crumbled.

Van Persie crossing directly from London to Manchester sees him become the first ever player to make such a move between the clubs. But as they say, one man’s meat is another man’s poison.

Van Persie was everything that Arsenal was last season. His 30goals and 13 assists last season helped Arsenal move from a time when they were even tipped for relegation into a team that finished third in the premier league. In total, he scored 37 goals in 48 matches, his highest appearances and goal tally since joining the Gunners in 2004.

At Manchester United, he will link up with Wayne Rooney in United’s forward line making Sir Alex Fergusson’s side a club with such a potent frontline in the league and beyond. Last season, Rooney scored only three goals lesser than his new striking partner.

For Arsenal though, it’s the second consecutive season for them to lose their most influential player, and captain, after losing Fabregas to Barcelona in 2011. Whether Olivier Giroud or Podolski will rise up to the occasion and replace the seemingly irreplaceable Dutchman is a matter of wait and see.

But truth is, van Persie’s exit in search of a greener pasture in Manchester has just extended Arsenal’s everlasting quest for a first title in 8 years for another full season.

And That's thesteifmastertake!!