Its been a while that we've known that Robin van Persie is not signing a new deal at Arsenal. Since this news was announced, 3 clubs have come forward as the only contenders to match the £25-30million valuation that the Gunners are holding out for. While Manchester City have apparently fallen behind in the race to sign him, Manchester United and Juventus remain the frontrunners to get 'RvP'. Let us assume for a second that money is not a motivator for the former Feyenoord man, maybe all clubs have offered him the same amount of money, which club might he sign for? Also, who might his partner be at his new club be, could they work together?
Manchester United. Partner - Wayne Rooney
Surely a mouthwatering partnership to match any in recent times; Robin and Rooney (soon to be called Robney?) look like they could work well. RvP's finishing last season has been devastating and Rooney can create chances as well as he can finish them himself; premiership defences would be quaking in their sponsor-supplied boots. However, I still can't really see it happening. United currently seem to have a very good system with developing the Rooney-Welbeck partnership and having the fantastic Hernandez as super-sub. Bringing in RvP would limit the game time of the two young forwards and may hinder their development in the long run. There can be no doubt that RvP would be challenging for trophies at Old Trafford, as is clearly his wish. Van Persie can be sure to get chances galore in a United team, making them a good choice for him. I'm still unsure as to how much United need him, but there's no doubt that it would be a good fit for RvP.
Juventus. Partner - Luis Suarez
Yes, it may be that reports are claiming that Juventus have pulled out of the race to sign van Persie, stating that the asking price is too high. These are only reports after all; I doubt Juventus would give up so easily after declaring they want to partner RvP with Liverpools Luis Suarez. It is an ambitious claim to make but shows the ambition Juventus have; hoping to capitalise on winning the Serie A title (If I may be so cheeky as to mention my last blog, this is something I believe Man City aren't doing). Whether van Persie is open to a move to Italy is unclear, he has just played in Holland and England and would need to learn a new language in Italy, but he would again be joining a club with more chance of winning trophies than Arsenal. The potential partnering with Suarez is interesting, his brilliance draws defenders to him, opening up space for other attackers on the pitch. Liverpools unwillingness to sell would make the partnership unlikely, but RvP would still have many other quality players with him, notably Andrea Pirlo, able to provide many chances for the Dutchman.
Manchester City. Partner - Sergio Aguero
I mention Aguero as the potential partner, but City's multitude of attackers create many possible combinations and an even greater number of possible line-ups. What worked at the end of last season for City was having Tevez and Aguero supported by Nasri and Silva out wide. Assuming Mancini sticks with this system, you would imagine RvP would replace Tevez. However, the many attacking options available for City would mean that van Persies position would be more under threat than at United and Juve. For a striker of van Persies calibre, a starting position should be guarenteed for him; at City he may find a poor run of games would result in being dropped. For Robin, this could be a major issue but the promise of trophy challenges may alter his decision. You can be sure that after winning the Premiership, City are here to stay. I think the Aguero partnership is the one that excites me the most here, the Argentine impressed hugely last season not just for his skills, but for his un-South American like work rate. With Nasri and Silva playing just behind these two we could see goals galore at the Etihad. However, as with United, you must question how much City need RvP. With a choice of strikers like Aguero, Tevez, Balotelli and Dzeko; you can't say this is a weak department for City. I'm interested to see how much City are willing to chase him when there are other areas of the pitch that could be prioritised higher.
Theres no doubt that all the potential strike partners for van Persie can create a very deadly duo; they are all world class footballers after all. All the clubs can offer van Persie a greater chance of winning trophies, which is no doubt the primary reason behind wanting a move away from the Emirates. Sticking my neck out and being very critical I would say that Juve's need of van Persie is greater than United's or City's but for the man himself a move to Old Trafford may be the most attractive option. Will the commentators be calling the United partnership next season Robney ala the Bayern Munich Robbery (Robben and Ribery)? You heard it here first.