The Daily Star have revealed that Van Persie is currently priced as short as 5/2 to rejoin the Gunners when the transfer window re-opens on the opening day of 2015.
Arsenal also favourites to sign five others
The same report adds that the Gunners have been made favourites to sign five other strikers at the turn of the New Year.
Swansea City’s Wilfried Bony is 9/4 to make the Gunners his next club; France international Karim Benzema is priced at 2/1 to join Arsene Wenger at the Emirates Stadium; Edinson Cavani is 17/10 to join Arsenal from Paris Saint-Germain; FC Porto’s Jackson Martinez - a long-term Gunners’ target - is 3/1 to move, while it’s 5/4 that Wenger goes back for Schalke forward Julian Draxler.
Giroud injury and Welbeck arrival
Much could depend on Olivier Giroud’s recovery from injury and how Welbeck settles into his role as the Gunners’ first-choice centre-forward over the next few months.
Giroud is expected to return to action in January after recently undergoing surgery on an ankle injury, prompting Wenger to shell out £16 million for Welbeck, who decided to leave Manchester United after 13 years with the Red Devils.
The onus will now be on Welbeck’s shoulders to fire Arsenal to victories in both the Premier League and Champions League, while Giroud recovers.
Welbeck left Manchester United for Arsenal in order to play more minutes in his favoured centre-forward position, but there would be a high possibility that he would either be played out on the left wing or left on the subs’ bench altogether if Van Persie made a shock return to the Emirates Stadium later this season.
Arsenal fans do not want Van Persie back
However, few - if any - Arsenal supporters would welcome Van Persie back to the club with open arms after the controversial manner in which he left the club back in August 2012.
The former Gunners’ captain burned his bridges with the fans who once adored him by leaving for the Red Devils - and any time the two clubs have met since, Van Persie has been the subject of fierce abuse from the Arsenal supporters.
However, Wenger refused to rule out the possibility of re-signing Van Persie - the two men have great mutual respect for one another - earlier this year.
That was back in February, when Van Persie was reportedly unhappy at Manchester United under the management of David Moyes.
The Dutch striker was delighted when United appointed Louis van Gaal as Moyes’ successor - but the former Barcelona and Bayern Munich coach may have trouble fitting Van Persie into his starting line-up after the international break following the arrival of Radamel Falcao.
Should he spent any sustained period of time on the United bench between now and January, a return to Arsenal may appeal to the 31-year-old once more.
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