Friday, 4 May 2012

RVP: He's Gunner stay -Dein's lucky pen -Theo's back!

Morning Gooners.

Robin van Persie was presented with his trophy for winning the Football Writers' Player of the Year award at a ceremony in London last night. He's already won the Professional Footballers' Association Player of the Year and after a superb season he was also voted POTY by football journalists.

I don't think anyone can be more deserving of these two awards than Robin. He's been head and shoulders above all of his peers and rightly both they and the football writers recognise that.

During the evening Robin was asked about his future at Arsenal, as you would expect. He told the audience he would sit down with Arsene Wenger and Ivan Gazidis once the season had ended - they've yet to set a date for the meeting - and thrash a few things out including his contract.

He said:

"We haven’t set a date but I will have a meeting with the boss like we did before now. We will be having a meeting about my future, and lots of other things.
"Arsenal is an unbelievable club. The player I am today is because of Arsenal. When I actually signed the deal (to join Arsenal) it was a dream come true.
"If you ask the likes of Robert Pires how he feels, what he feels like he will say ‘I feel like a Gunner’ – and whatever happens with me I will always be a Gunner."

Robin has genuine affection for the club. He loves being captain - both on and off the pitch - and working with Arsene Wenger. But those "lots of other things" might be the problem for us.

He wants to be paid on a par with the likes of the Wayne Rooney's of this world. That really shouldn't be a club the size of Arsenal but I'm sure you're aware of our penny pinching activities.

Robin wants to see more quality players signed. He's felt the goalscoring burden so much this season - if he doesn't score then who else will and the signing of  Lukas Podolski is certainly a good start.

He wants to play in the Champions League and we must finish in third to ensure we get that next season.

These are maybe minor points but they're certainly a factor in deciding whether Robin will commit his long term future to the club. I think we'll have to give Robin exactly what he wants for us to get his signature. I don't see the deal being done before the Euros though. There just won't be enough time for us to get our business done to prove to Robin his future is with the club.

And even if Robin doesn't sign this summer, I don't think there is a chance that Arsene will allow him to be sold no matter the price. Where can you start looking for a player of van Persie's quality on the budget we spend on players...

So let's get David Dein's lucky pen out of retirement and get it in Robin's hand. Then he'll sign a new deal.

Seriously, after reading what he said last night, I've never felt more sure that Robin wants to sign a new deal  with us. I think we'll have to be patient but I think the deal will be done.

Elsewhere the Daily Mail are reporting that Tony Adams will not be considered for the assistant manager role should - as expected - Pat Rice decide to retire at the end of the season. To be honest, it doesn't come as a surprise to me that he might not get the job. Arsenal has been a club which likes to promote from within so handing the job to either Steve Bould or Neil Banfield won't come as a shock.

The manager has revealed the early team news ahead of tomorrow's game with Norwich. We've got the same squad that faced Stoke minus Abou Diaby who is out with a calf problem and is unlikely to figure again this season.

However there is good news on Theo Walcott. He has a chance to be fit for the West Brom game next weekend

That's your lot for today. Have a good Friday then it's the bank holiday weekend! Until tomorrow.

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