Back in June 2014, Robin van Persie told reporters that Manchester United fans hadn’t seen the best of him yet and that he planned to play on until he was at least 40.
“Ideally, I want to play until I’m 40 – maybe I can even stretch that to 42 – but that’s what I want because this is what I love doing and it’s what I’ve done my whole life,” the Dutch striker was quoted as saying by the Manchester Evening News.
However, 12 months after that statement Van Persie was unceremoniously sold by the coach he was previously so close to, Louis van Gaal, after his performance-levels suffered a steep decline during the 2014-15 campaign.
Van Persie, who won the Premier’s Golden Boot award in 2012 and 2013 following prolific seasons with Arsenal and United respectively, has spent the past two-and-a-half seasons with Fenerbahce and his goalscoring record is decent enough.
In 87 appearances for the Turkish giants, the 34-year-old has netted 36 goals.
He scored 22 of those goals during his first season with Fener and 14 during the following campaign.
Van Persie's career hits a new low
This season, however, Van Persie is yet to score a single goal - albeit having only made four appearances.
Van Persie suffered a knee injury in September but, since returning in November, has not been selected by his manager, Aykut Kocaman, who continues to overlook him.
The former Premier League star currently finds himself behind Tottenham loanee Vincent Janssen and ex-Spurs flop Roberto Soldado in the pecking order at the Sukru Saracoglu Stadium - and, as you can probably imagine, he’s had enough.
According to multiple reports this evening - including Dutch website AD - Van Persie is close to leaving Fener on a permanent deal.
The Turkish club won’t stand in his way. It seems they now feel that the left-footed forward’s best days are now long behind him.
The club Van Persie is set to join next
French publication L’Equipe, however, believe that Feyenoord will offer Van Persie the chance to extend his career.
Feyenoord was Van Persie’s first professional club and a return to De Kuip now looks certain.
Still, such a dramatic decline wouldn’t have been predicted by many people three or four years ago.News Now - Sport News