Is Robin van Persie the key to Manchester United regaining the Premier League title?
Robin van Persie could have been playing for Manchester City - instead he's firing United towards another league title
It is the question on the lips of both Manchester United and Manchester City fans right now.
Having stolen the title on a memorable final day last season, City fans must have been licking their lips in anticipation for what awaited them in the summer transfer window.
Notorious big spenders already, many expected them to add to their title-winning squad, with Robin van Persie just one of the many big-name players to be heavily linked with a move to the Etihad Stadium.
Making his decision public about where his future lies, Van Persie started a whirlwind rumour-mill when Arsenal opted to sell their most prized asset with just a year to run on his contract. City seemed favourites to secure Van Persie’s signature, with their overwhelming financial support putting them at the head of the queue, enabling Roberto Mancini's side to meet Arsenal's asking price and satisfying Van Persie's wage demands.
When Manchester United confirmed the signing of Shinji Kagawa from Borrusia Dortmund, many would be forgiven for thinking the young Japanese starlet would be the 'major' signing of the summer at Old Trafford. But Ferguson managed to thrash out a deal with Arsenal and agreed a fee of £24 million for Van Persie, snaring the Dutchman from under the noses of local rivals City.
Roberto Mancini has already stated his frustrations at missing out on the free-scoring forward, and it is easy to see why given his current form.
Many wondered if he would be the same Van Persie that was so prolific at Arsenal. Yet few could have predicted just how well he would settle into life at Old Trafford, looking as if he has been there his entire career.
A glittering partnership with Wayne Rooney has developed, only for it to be cut short by an injury to the latter. But even without Rooney the last few weeks, Van Persie has continued his fantastic form, netting 17 goals in 22 league games this season, most recently against Liverpool in a 2-1 win at Old Trafford, and playing a part in giving United a seven-point lead in the title race.
His goal showed just what a terrific player he is, moving back and forth awaiting the cross from Evra, stealing that vital yard every striker craves on his marker to finish neatly passed Pepe Reina. 'RVP' has said himself this season that he feels he is "surrounded by champions", and with his current form, he fully deserves to be a champion himself by the end of the season.
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