Holland manager Louis van Gaal believes Robin van Persie has stepped up another level since moving to Manchester United.
The former Ajax and Barcelona boss feels Van Persie’s decision to leave Arsenal in the summer for Old Trafford was correct and has allowed him to improve his game even further.
Gunners supporters were livid when last season’s Premier League Golden Boot winner decided to switch from Emirates Stadium to play for their rivals, but Van Gaal is grateful for the decision.
In fact, the Dutch boss feels the transfer has sparked something in Van Persie that he has never seen in a player of similar age.
“Robin van Persie is getting better and better – it’s incredible,” he is quoted as saying in The Mirror.
“He is a super professional player who really knows what he wants from his career and how he will achieve it.
“I have never seen any player reach Robin’s age and still improve as a footballer.”
Van Gaal admitted he was going to start phasing the 29-year-old out of his plans with Oranje, but was forced into a re-think when he first encountered the determination that the former Bayern Munich manager believes is behind his impressive Manchester United form.
“Moving to United has been good for him – and it has been good for Holland,” he added.
“I had never worked with him before and the first thing he told me was that if I kept him on the bench he would work even harder to prove me wrong.
“He said he would never walk away from Holland – and I absolutely loved that about him.”
United boss Sir Alex Ferguson encountered many a cautionary voice when he decided to splash out £24million on a player of Van Persie’s age, contract situation and injury record.
The Scot’s judgement has been vindicated, however, as his new striker has already hit 15 goals in only 21 appearances and is fast becoming the Red Devils’ key man.