Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has called on Gunners fans to respect Robin Van Persie when his side take on Manchester United this Saturday.

The Dutchman left Arsenal for Manchester United in a £24m move this summer, and is set to face his former club for the first time this weekend.

But Wenger has called on his fans not to repeat the anti-Van Persie songs that have been heard at Arsenal away games this season.

"I hope it is a respectful reception because he has played for us for eight years, he has done very well for us," Wenger said on Sky Sports. "You want him to be respected.

"We campaign against discrimination, it was still the case last week so why should it not be the case this week?

"I don't know what the fans will do, I think he will get the reception I hope for."

Arsenal return to the ground where they lost 8-2 last season in embarrassing fashion, and the Gunners will need a more positive result on Saturday if they are to redress their worrying recent form.

Arsene Wenger's side find themselves in sixth place, but are already seven points off league leaders Chelea.

Defeat on Saturday would leave Arsenal well off the pace, and struggling to keep up with north London rivals Tottenham, who currently sit fourth.

But the Gunners certainly found their goalscoring touch this week, with an incredible 7-5 victory over Reading in the Capital One Cup.

And Olivier Giroud got on the scoresheet for Arsenal, which is good news for Wenger as he needs his summer signing to be firing on Saturday. Manchester United have had defensive troubles this season, and conceded five against Chelsea, although Sir Alex Ferguson is likely to recall his big names for the visit of Arsenal.

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