Arsenal legend Nigel Winterburn has warned Arsenal that they will have to strengthen this coming January and next summer if they are to ensure that they will retain the services of talisman Robin van Persie beyond the 18 months left on his contract.
The fact that Van Persie is unwilling to sign a contract extension at this moment in time has alerted the likes of Manchester City and Anzhi, who are ready to flex their massive finance muscles come next summer if the Dutchman still hasn’t agreed to a new deal.
Winterburn said on the situation:
Robin Van Persie is looking at the situation at Arsenal and he’s just seen two of the top players leave, so he’s not going to sign a new contract at this moment in time.
How do you change that? Well, the team needs to start winning games and Arsene Wenger needs to strengthen the team, if he thinks he needs to, in January. Then again at the end of the season.
If Arsene Wenger does that then Van Persie will sign again. If he doesn’t, then there’s always the possibility that Van Persie will say, ‘listen, I’ve given my all to Arsenal, but I’m now going to let my contact run down and at the end of it I need a fresh challenge’.
I am definitely inclined to agree with Winterburn as Van Persie has looked head and shoulders above anyone else in the Arsenal team so far this season in terms of quality. The Dutchman is definitely a key part of the team and hopefully Wenger will be able to convince him to stay with the gunners beyond the terms of his current contract, but one feels that the Frenchman will have to recruit more players on Van Persie’s level to make sure of it!