Per Mertesacker has properly wound Robin van Persie up and that is quite ok with me.
Per Mertesacker released his autobiography this week and we were, of course, treated to excerpts, one of which seems to have got right up Mr. Robin van History Re-writer’s nose.
No doubt it hit a nerve, given the fact Wenger stood by van Persie for years only for him to throw it in the manager’s face the first chance he got by insisting on a move to United and then trying to turn the fans against the club. ‘Hey guys…’
‘”My opinion at first is that loads of ex-players are making a book, it’s sort of fashion to write a book, which I will personally not do,” he told the Daily Mail of all places. “That is his opinion, he can have that. I’m not really going into that. He can think what he wants.”
Van Persie then launched an unneeded defence of Wenger, as if he wasn’t someone who shafted him by leaving for his greatest rival. “Arsene is a great coach and manager and fantastic person and helped me to improve as a player and a human. I’m forever grateful for that. I worked eight years under him, he gave me chances.
“On a private matter, he was always open to chat to me about life and as a person as well, and as a coach he was great. He was fantastic. He really had a philosophy. He always wanted to attack, play positive, pass, create and play together.
“Some people judge him just on trophies, like whatever, Per now is finding a reason. He can say what he wants to say.”
Back in August, Robin van Persie, without a hint of shame, sat in the studios of BTSport and declared that the reason he left Arsenal was because the club never offered him a new contract.
“You can compare me being at Arsenal to being married,” van Persie said on BT Sport. “Me and my wife – Arsenal – were married for eight years.
“After eight years, my wife, possibly got a bit tired of me. Those are the facts.
“If Arsenal are not offering you a new deal…you can have different views on things but the fact is Arsenal never offered me a new deal.
“Then you have to look around. I was ambitious. I still wanted to win the league. That is life.”
“I’ve thought long and hard about it, but I have decided not to extend my contract,” the Dutchman wrote on his own website. The bold is mine just in case you miss that bit.
That really can’t be any clearer, can it?
Surely if Arsenal weren’t offering him a new contract there would be nothing for him to turn down. If Arsenal hadn’t offered him a contract why not mention that back 2012 when trying to get the fans on side? Why not say ‘Arsenal have not offered me a new contract and I need to secure the future for my family’ or similar?
The reason is quite clear.
This is all a new narrative that van Persie has dreamed up in his own head. Perhaps he thinks that it will win Arsenal fans around again, perhaps there’s some other reason.
And this fight with Mertesacker is all in his head too, assuming the BFG implied something van Persie simply inferred then using it to boost his media profile.