Quitting Arsenal Was A Mistake

By Daniel Cowan
In Arsenal
Jan 3rd, 2013
93 Comments

First things first, Happy New Year my dear readers, thank you for stopping by.

I had a little trouble writing today’s title. I had so many things to call it but I thought if the title mentioned the name of the person this blog is mostly about that it wouldn’t get read at all.

The various titles I had were “Why United are a one-man team”, “Robin should never have left, here’s why”, “RvP made a big mistake moving to United” etc.

Still with me? Phew… the name didn’t have you reaching for the hammer to smash whatever device you are reading this on then. Good, I’m glad we can be adults about this ‘person’ ;-).

I believe that Robin made a mistake leaving Arsenal despite what the table says.

Robin said recently that he is playing in a team of champions, a nasty dig at Arsenal many Gooners felt.

I’d argue that Robin is the champion and he left a team of could be’s to join a team of could be’s. I know many will argue that United finished 2nd without him and Arsenal finished 3rd with him but that doesn’t take into account the signings Arsenal and United have made, the improvement in Arsenal’s defending, their weak area from last season nor does it consider the weakness of United’s defence at the back end of last season and carried on into this.

Last season Arsenal were accused of being a one man team who would be stuck in mid-table if it wasn’t for Robin. That may have been true but we are doing okay-ish without him however United this season would be a mid-table club without our despised Dutchman or least they would be in an exaggerated table.

I said before he left that leaving would be foolish as player for player Arsenal were equal or superior to United and with our new signings and RvP staying we’d piss all over United and probably the league. Looking at the table now I’m not sure my belief was well placed but I think we would have been closer with him in the team.

Robin thought otherwise or his wallet told him otherwise or whatever you choose to believe his motivations were and he left for the 2nd worst club in the country he could have moved to from a Gooners perspective.

One man team much?

There are lots of if buts and maybes to consider and take into account when making statements like I have made but to simplify things I have just looked at with and without RvP in the league.

If Robin’s goals and assists were removed from United and not replaced then United would be languishing in 11th place. Yes, that’s right, 11th place.

United have scored 24 goals via Van Persie, either from his touch or via his assists. Sure, someone else could have come in and scored those goals but for this exaggerated table lets say that the replacement did not make a difference and the games panned out the same but without the impact Robin made. This is how the season thus far would have panned out without him.

Starting with Fulham in August, United without RvP drop 2 points and draw 2-2. A week later they lose 2-0 to Southampton as United have no Robin to score a hattrick. (A week later they could have drawn 1-1 with Liverpool as RvP wouldn’t have scored a penalty but I’ve decided to give United this penalty and win as I did not give them the penalty that RvP missed against Southampton).

Fast forward to October and they beat Newcastle 2-0 instead of 3-0 (goal difference can be crucial as City showed last season). Thirteen days later United go on to lose 2-1 to Stoke as Van Persie isn’t there with a goal and two assists. Similarly they lose 2-1 to Chelsea a week later as Van Persie doesn’t score his goal and he doesn’t hit the post with the rebound bouncing off Luiz’s head and into the net.

When United faced Arsenal in their next game they drew 1-1 instead of winning 2-1 as Van Persie wasn’t there to capitalise on Vermaelen’s mistake. Nor was he there seven days later to give an assist in the Villa game resulting in a 2-2 draw.

As November drew to a close and United faced West Ham at Old Trafford, Van Persie was not there to poke in a goal in the 1st minute and the game ended in a 0-0 draw. December opened not with a 7 goal thriller at the Madjeski but with a 5 goal cracker and without RvP’s goal and assist the game ended 3-2 to Reading.

Where would we be if we kept him?

On the 9th of December Man City came from 2-0 down to draw 2-2 because Robin wasn’t there to score in Fergie time. In mid-December Purse Strings wasn’t around to score or assist in United’s 1-1 draw with Sunderland and he wasn’t there to assist in the 1-0 loss to Swansea either on the 23rd making for a miserable Christmas for the United faithful.

Boxing day was an exciting 3-3 draw with Newcastle with Little Garden Vegetable scoring a 90th minute equaliser instead of a 90th minute winner.

The New Year was slightly better for the boys in tablecloths as even without Van Persie and his 3 goals and assist they managed to win back to back games 1-0 against West Brom and Wigan although these meagre scorelines have hardly helped their pitiful goal difference.

And now, on January 3rd 2013, in an English Premier League without Van Persie, United would be stuck in 11th place, 21 points off top spot and 10 points off Arsenal in 5th. United would be propping up WBA, Stoke, Liverpool, West Ham and Swansea, not to mention the top 5 of City, Chelsea, Spurs, Everton and Arsenal.

In this scenario Arsenal would only be 1 point better off but United would be 27 points worse off and with 24 fewer goals to their names. They would still have conceded 28 goals and without RvP’s 16 goals and 8 assists they would not have won so many games from losing positions as they did over 10 times with RvP.

11 of their wins would have resulted in 5 losses and 6 draws as well as a draw ending in a loss.

Robin van Persie has been of the utmost importance to United this season and the difference between their squad without him sitting in 11th to him playing for the current league leaders. Again, someone else would have played in his place but there are no guarantees in football and we cannot say that his impact would have been equalled by another signing or different player. If Robin was that easily replaceable then United would not have spent £24m on him.

As I mentioned, Arsenal would only be a point better off if he never joined United but I think that shows the, for want of a better word, strength, of this team without him. With him who knows were we’d be.

There are many things to take into consideration such as pre-assists, different people being in the position that RvP was in when he received the ball etc and there is no way to determine how the league would look if he hadn’t moved to United but I think it is fair to say that they would not be where they are without him.

United certainly wouldn’t be 11th without him as someone else would have scored some goals, maybe not as many but some. Based on United being a decent team already without him I’m going to give them back half of the goals and points (12 and 13) that they lost when I removed RvP from the equation and that puts them in 4th with 38 points and a goal difference of 14.

Arsenal have a game in hand and with a goal difference of 18/19 any win would put them above United.

Before Van Persie left for United this is what I said/predicted. I said that United’s squad was no better than ours and the real difference was Van Persie and given those numbers I think I was pretty close to being right ;-).

In the above scenario, where neither team has Van Persie, Arsenal are 3 points behind United with a game in hand and a superior goal difference, backed up by a superior defence and almost equal attack.

I cannot say that Arsenal would have been better off with Van Persie because our goals have been shared around a lot and who is to say that those players would have scored still or that Van Persie would have scored their goals or assisted their assists but I think we can say that if United can gain half of the points and goals they lose without Van Persie that we can do the same and that takes us to the top of the table on 48 points and 52 goals scored, with a GD of 31 and a game in hand, which if won takes us to 51 points which is just 1 point behind the current tally of United with Van Persie. Like I said, if Robin wasn’t able to make that sort of difference then Arsenal fans wouldn’t be bothered about him leaving and Fergie wouldn’t have stumped up the extra £1.5m when Arsène upped the price at the last minute.

Of course old red-nose is happy… he bought the best striker in the league

Regardless of these ifs, buts and maybes, United are still top and thus Van Persie has a better chance of winning the league than Arsenal do but I still feel he made a mistake and may look back on this move as a mistake.

I’m going to lay my cards out, I don’t think United will win the league this year because their defence is pants. Yes, their attack is superb at the moment but as Arsenal have found out to their cost in the past, a great attack won’t always save you from the errors of your defence. If, however, I am wrong and they do win the league it will be because of their attack more than anything else.

This is all pie in the sky of course and there is no way of saying that any of this would actually have happened if Van Persie had stayed because other players play and other players get signed etc but I do think that it underlines the importance of a player like Van Persie.

He clearly improves United and clearly improved us and we’re not far behind where we were with him this time last season so surely we can assume that United would be a weaker team without him, unless they signed someone of equal talent which wouldn’t be easy, and that Arsenal would be stronger with him. If we had managed to keep Van Persie I believe we’d be much closer to United than we are now. We might not be above them but I think the difference would be less than a third of the 18 points it is at the moment.

I think Chelsea or City will win the league this year, however the little boy inside me (do you see what I did there ;-)) still holds out hope that Arsenal can catch up, it’s not impossible but it is highly improbable.

I think the season will end with Manchester United probably above Arsenal but not by much and maybe Van Persie will realise that United wasn’t the better place to win a trophy and maybe he could have made the difference had he stayed at Arsenal.

I made this when I thought he was going to stay. I still believe it would have happened if he did.

Maybe he’ll look back and think that if he had stayed and helped us win something by being the difference between the two sides he could have retired a club legend and have been the captain that led the team out of the trophy-less wilderness.

He may win a trophy or two at United but he’ll never be a legend there. At best, he’ll be remembered as a guy with a few good seasons and someone they stole from Arsenal.

The guys in our current squad who help us win our next trophy will be remembered as legends though, here’s hoping that happens soon.

Thanks for reading! Please comment on this post, subscribe by email, share with friends and follow me on twitter (@thedanielcowan).

 

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About "" - 475 Posts

I am a South London born Gooner now living in Leigh-On-Sea, Essex. I'm a husband, daddy, podcaster, trainer enthusiast and aspiring author. My work is my passion and for that I will always be grateful. Here is where I write my thoughts and views on Arsenal Football Club, the greatest team the world has ever seen.

93 Responses to “Quitting Arsenal Was A Mistake”

  1. agibo9 says:

    There’s no doubt that things would be different if he stayed but there are so many variables in football that United wouldn’t be 11th but still near the top. They may have brought in another striker instead for example, in the games where he won it for them someone else might have stepped up to the plate, but you can be sure that they wouldn’t be in 11th, that’s just silly. I think he will win them the league and I think in his view that he will have therefore have made the right decision. And quite frankly it’s hard to argue with that.

    • Daniel Cowan says:

      but you can be sure that they wouldn’t be in 11th, that’s just silly

      I said “There are many things to take into consideration such as pre-assists, different people being in the position that RvP was in when he received the ball etc and there is no way to determine how the league would look if he hadn’t moved to United”

    • How do you know that without RVP someone else would have scored the goals? It’s ignorant to think that because RVP scores them (which is his job) someone else wouldn’t.

    • Daniel Cowan says:

      I said someone else would score but that I felt as a team they would have scored less. I think that is a fair assumption.

    • Joffey says:

      Fact of the matter is money is the root of all evil.. For Arsenal’s sake that they did not spend the amount to increase Van Persie’s wages and for Van Persie wanting to have more…United were willing to offer him what he wanted, and he took it…and if Chelsea or City offered him more I am pretty sure he would have been in a light blue or dark blue shirt. My point? Simple, what gets you fancy cars, what allows you to dine with the super rich..certainly not winning trophies…money!! Hell if I earned 35k a week and played for Barca and up came QPR and offered me 110k a week I would be on the next plane for my medical… Footballing reasons? That is why he was sold, Arteta was a footballing reason, he took a paycut to join us. I just think while many would say that Ferguson did well in signing Robin, I see it as an act out of desperation because losing the title again to City would be too much to bare just my 5 cents worth

  2. Lobster says:

    So manunited would be in 11th place if they played the entire season with 10men? A decent achievement, don’t u think? A fairer judgement of their team would be to look at chicharitos goals and assists to games ratio since he came to England and replace VanHim`s contribution with his. Doubt they’d be number1 but your analysis is a bit unfair

    • Daniel Cowan says:

      It’s not a serious analysis. I did give United back 12 goals from the 24 they lose through RvP which I felt was fair considering he is an extremely talented player and to say that his impact can be easily covered is a slight on his talent.

      I also said “There are many things to take into consideration such as pre-assists, different people being in the position that RvP was in when he received the ball etc and there is no way to determine how the league would look if he hadn’t moved to United”

  3. Robin says:

    Brilliant analysis Dan. It’s a downgrade if you ask me; Liverpool is’nt fantastic at the moment but nobody can ever forget Gerard. RVP’s missed out on being unforgettable.

  4. Frimponged says:

    I don’t think United would be mid-table without RvP. That’s ignorant, imo. You basically say that without RvP they would have played with 10 players each match. I understand what you mean but it’s not really fair. Though I agree without RvP United wouldn’t be first. Great blog as always, Daniel!

  5. naz says:

    I think u miss the point of why RVP left (other than the money). Its because man utd had the ‘balls’ to spend 24 million on a 29 year old. If they didn’t buy RVP they would have bought another world class player to do the same for them. Arsenal won’t even spend 24 million if they had the chance to buy Messi.and that is aresnals problem.

  6. AS says:

    great writeup…I think it makes a lot of sense. Still gutted he left, seeing him with his new mates in a MU shirt hurts every time.

    I think people need to stop slating Wenger and Arsenal for RvP’s departure, it’s not as if they wanted to sell him – the fact that Theo was still here in the final year of his contract suggests that Wenger would have kept RvP this season, even risking losing him for nothing at the end of the season, but the reason he was sold was not to get some cash for him, but because he left Arsenal with no choice when he declared in that statement that he “disagreed” with Arsenal’s direction, as captain, that was a complete public undermining of Wenger and Arsenal, there was no way back for him after that – unless he retracted that statement and signed a new contract, he did neither. We eventually sold him to MU because, even if it hurt, they were paying the most, and it now seems, after what Mancini and RvP revealed, United were his choice. Legend he is not.

  7. cin says:

    Manu club is for winning titles.

    Arsenal is doing business and making profit.

  8. Manchester United finished on 89 points without RvP last season. That was equal to City but lost the title on goal difference. Manchester United without RvP finished 19 points ahead of Arsenal with RvP last season.

    This season, United have 52 points that is 18 points more than Arsenal having played a game more. While RvP’s contribution has been immense, you can not just blatantly say that without RvP, United would be piss poor. If it wasn’t Robin then somebody else would score goals (may be not all 24 you’ve mentioned) Maybe Berbatov wouldn’t have been sold if Robin was still at Arsenal. Danny Welbeck & Chicharito would’ve featured more than they have managed & score few more goals.

    • Daniel Cowan says:

      That’s a well reasoned response and echoes what I say in the blog. I’m not saying that no RVP for Utd = 11th place. I put United on less points but still near the top because I think Van Persie is a fantastic player and has really helped propel United this season.

      It cannot be denied that United’s defence is much weaker this year and prone to many lapses. Without a superb attack, of which Van Persie is a part, then United would not be doing so well and that is a fact that even the most blinkered fan would concede.

      I’m certain that United would have carried on scoring goals without RvP just as Arsenal have but maybe not as many and I said that I believed that if RvP stayed at Arsenal he could have made a difference and maybe the gap wouldn’t be so big.

      Many of your fellow fans haven’t taken the time to read the blog and have just attacked me on Twitter. Maybe if they took the time to read the blog and respectfully disagree the way you have then maybe they might realise that this blog isn’t about saying United would be nothing without Van Persie but saying that United would be that little bit worse off without him and Arsenal would be that little bit better off with him and that is a fact. Players like Van Persie, Rooney, Cazorla, Hazard, Silva, Aguero etc make the difference and having them is better than not having them.

      That is the true message of this blog.

    • Lobster says:

      Appreciate the time u take to reply to the the comments, instead of cowaring away whenever your views are challenged, like some other bloggers I know. Will be looking out for your posts from now on DC. Stay Red

  9. jaja says:

    While this may be true of United without RVP, it only goes to prove how foolish, naive and short sighted Wenger was for selling his best player to his rival! The man can be very dumb sometimes.

  10. “I said before he left that leaving would be foolish as player for player Arsenal were equal or superior to United and with our new signings and RvP staying we’d piss all over United and probably the league.”

    I laughed of 5 mins nonstop reading this part.

    At what poiint do you think Arsenal were equal or superior to United? Looking at past few years I just can not see this point.

    • Daniel Cowan says:

      I was basing it on the players that we had signed. On a player by player basis I felt we were as strong as United and defensively we have proven so this year and you have scored 12 more goals that us, 16 of which RvP scored and 8 more he assisted. I think it is fair to say that the difference would be less than 6 goals more if you didn’t have him.

      You cannot deny that your defence has been poor this season and Arsenal’s has been miles better than they were last season.

      I think it says a lot that United still rely on Scholes and Giggs, despite their immense talent, and in much the same way we’ve struggled to replace players we’ve lost United have struggled for years to replace Scholes. Cleverly or Kagawa might become that player but currently they are not.

      On that basis I felt that we, with RvP, would have been equal to MU. Call me delusional if you wish but that is how I felt at the time.

  11. Franklin says:

    I don’t often dispute anything you have to say but this is pure fantasy; United lost out on goal difference last year and they’d be 1st or 2nd without him, just like last year as it’s not as if City are racking up major points right now. And it’s madness to say we’re as strong if you take him out, either that or it says a lot about Wenger’s abilities- 18 points behind last year and it was US that had RVP.

    • Daniel Cowan says:

      Last year we didn’t have Giroud, Cazorla or Podolski.

      I felt that, before the season started and RvP left, Arsenal, player for player, would be as strong as United. Our defence was getting better and United’s was deteriorating. I felt that with our new signings that we could stand toe to toe with United as long as we kept RvP.

      We cannot say that they’d be 18 ahead of us without RvP or that we’d be closer with him but I think it’s fair to the mans talent to say that his presence would be both felt and missed by us and them if he had stayed.

  12. justin21 says:

    Pretty silly article.

    You don’t think AFC would be better with him because the goals are distributed around this season? Have you checked United and how distributed their goals are?

    No arguing RvP improved them, but that “average” team had always challenged. The declining and weak United team had lost last season through goal difference and was above AFC by how many points again?

    We had RvP last year, we had Cesc, Clichy and Nasri and RvP before but we did not even came anywhere close.

    It’s their strong, fighting mentality that gives them the edge and what our club has been missing. Been missing more than RvP.

    • Daniel Cowan says:

      I agree with the last half of your comment but felt the opening line was unfair.

      With the players we have this season, experience, pace, ability etc (experience being the one we missed the most) I felt that with RvP (having signed Cazorla, Giroud and Podolski, Arteta bedded in and Mertesacker used to the league) we would have stood closer to United. Without him a little less close but without him and them having him adds up to a huge gap.

    • justin21 says:

      The whole premise of being generous with giving them half the RvP points while also saying:

      “I cannot say that Arsenal would have been better off with Van Persie because our goals have been shared around a lot and who is to say that those players would have scored still…”

      It is just the method you use to make your point across. All this they would have been this and that in the table without a certain player that makes it silly.

      The what-ifs and maybes.

      Giroud had scored sure but that was when we were battering inferior teams. he disappears in big games. Cazorla started amazingly but had also quickly became average, because he is tired. Which no offense, i don’t buy as an excuse. Poldi just like Giroud disappears in big games and does not really help in defending.

      I know they all need time to settle in but if you consider their current form, not their potential or past achievement, and compare them to their counterpart in United. They are sadly, inferior to United’s.

      To be fair, United’s defense was injury ridden this first half. They even had a midfield playing as a defender in more than handful of their games. The last two games where in they finally got Vidic back, Smalling, and mostly all their defenders except Jones, I think. They actually kept two clean sheets. So I wouldn’t bet on them conceding as much anymore.

      United players suit their style of play. They adapt very well and are willing to work hard and makes the most out of their abilities. They don’t care about beautiful football, they just want to win.

      Our style of play does not make the most of our players, in my opinion. RvP wouldn’t change that.

      I might come across as a United fan but I am just being realistic. We all knew we wouldn’t compete this season. Well, I knew of it, even if we have kept RvP, new players need time to settle. And our additions are more in offensive positions which wasn’t our problem last year with RvP.

  13. Rav Sidhu says:

    This is the most brain-dead post I have read this year!

    Last season Manchester United did not have RVP and they lost the title on goal difference while Arenal took third with RVP.

    Yes I do think RVP has put Manchester United where they are this season but even without him they would still be top two.

    • Daniel Cowan says:

      Maybe so but your defence is worse this year that it was last year.

      It’s worth noting that Van Persie is a “6 pointer”, what he adds to Utd he removed from Arsenal thus in effect doubling the gap. If you remove him from the equation the gap is smaller but still quite big, if you remove him from United and put him back into Arsenal then the gap lessens to an assailable amount.

    • benjyshow says:

      “most brain dead” yet you still agree with some of the content?…better slow to type than type rubbish!

  14. Cheadle says:

    Excellent take on alternate realities. I love it and If you add the dynamic that existed within the RVP led Arsenal team we might have run away with this title. Unlike players, fans cannot defect, its in the heart . The current Arsenal team can make you scream with delight or shout with anger, yet we still love them. They just need to really TURN UP for every game, no off-days, play to their strengths and make life unbearable for opponents. There is no reason why given time, Arsenal’s British core surrounded by seasoned Internationals from across the globe cannot be the most (feared) successful team in Europe

  15. benjyshow says:

    not a bad post at all, very interesting

  16. wenkev02 says:

    I admire your diligence with your blog.The prick has made all the difference to them.when they win the title we will be just as pissed off.Fergy is a good but very lucky manager.The prick would have got injured if he had stayed.Now I’m going into a ramble!!! Great blog !! Cheers Bob.

  17. You must realise that this is a completely flawed premise? You can’t honestly think that the hypothesis whereby you remove a player from a team and all other events and factors remain exactly the same makes even the slightest bit of sense?

    • Daniel Cowan says:

      It’s not supposed to make sense. The point is highlighting that he scores a lot of goals and makes a lot of assists. Without him someone else would score goals and make assists but would they make as many? I don’t think they would and that small difference could lose you a few points and if he stayed it could have gained Arsenal a few points and maybe the gap would be 5/6/7/8 points instead of 18 and Arsenal still have a game in hand so the gap would look very small.
      It’s not a dig at United, they are a fantastic team, defence is a little dodgy at the moment, but they’re still a great team however I feel that RvP adds as much to United as he took away from Arsenal and therein lies the majority of a gap. Think of a game they call a “6 pointer”… Van Persie moving to United became a “6 pointer” player.

      Remove him from the equation completely and there is still a gap, a sizeable one of about 12 points I’d say but with a game in hand that could be 9, a big gap but not unassailable. Add his 6 points to Arsenal if he stayed and that gap could be as little as 3. Do you see where I was going with this now?

      The point of the post was to highlight was a difference he makes and exaggerating the loss of his impact by saying United would be 11th (if his goals weren’t replaced) just highlights that point.

      Bear in mind that United fans (and others) were saying last season that Arsenal would be mid-table at best without him….

  18. Eris says:

    Don’t forget the wage increase he is enjoying. You make it look like he only left for trophies.
    Arsenal won’t match that, so even without winning a trophy, he gets to improve his income stream.

    • John says:

      Exactly. “Oh dear I made a mistake, should have stayed at Arsenal”. >Gets ipad and checks online bank statement<. "Nah".

  19. Tijn says:

    I see the point you’re making here but in my opinion you’re missing a few things. For example, the players that have come to strengthen Arsenal (Podolski Giroud, maybe even Cazorla) wouldn’t have come if RvP had stayed. And your end conclusion is wrong aswell in my opinion, I see no way United losing the league this year. With the insanely good attack and a defence that starts finding form, including the return of Vidic, will only improve. Besides that I see them strengthen themselves and I surely hope for you Arsenal fans that Wenger does the same. If he doesn’t, I don’t see any way he can get into tglhe top 4 with heavy competiton of Everton and Spurs this year.

    Feel free to disagree but that’s my opinion :), I like how you think but I think your conclusions are too easy. Keep writing though,made me think 🙂

  20. Vishal says:

    He was a money bag prick who left for the money. Get over it. Give Wenger the time to rebuild the team. As a thinking fan, dont expect miracles. Keep your faith in Wenger. The best person to lead our club.

  21. oneniltothearsenal says:

    A lot of people here are missing the point. United wouldn’t be 11th, but I doubt they’d be first, at least not with ease. The argument that “someone will score those goals” is accepting that anyone can replicate robins goal scoring form. It’s like saying had messi missed out a year, barcelona would have scored those 90-some goals anyway. Robin is a fantastic player who often creates goals out of nothing. To think someone else would always step up to do the same is assuming a lot. Robin is the kind of player who, when he does play, offers the team so much more than other players, he’s world class. I’m sure united would manage to get goals, but there were many matches this season where robin pulled them out of trouble just as he did with us. Games where they didn’t look like scoring but he worked his magic. We can’t ignore that you only need to score more than the opposition and you don’t need a van persie hat trick to win it, but having a player with that amount of goal scoring skill greatly increases your chances of winning a game. Plus what makes united fans so certain they would have bought anyone else? Or anyone else even close to that calibre?

  22. Appreciate the work put in, but dont completely agree with it. A few points:
    1. Utd score a lot of goals, and the fact that they have scored just 1 more goal than last season at this stage proves that they were doing the job without RVP. They surely wouldnt have kept the 24 mill in the bank. They wouldve got a top striker (may be Lewandowski) who wouldve filled the gap to a great extent.

    2. Rooney/Welback are no longer the focal point of the attack, hence may be their poor goal scoring record this season. Who is to say they wouldnt have repeated last season’s success.

    3. If RVP had stayed, we wouldnt have bought both Giroud and Poldi. So our numbers wouldve been dented there.

    4. Even with RVP we werent scoring goals galore, Utd still were, no reason to think the same trend would’nt have continued despite us making signings, because Utd wouldve made them too.

    5. I would love to be proved wrong, but I think Utd WILL win the league this season. Its not the personnel alone that makes them win, coz they are average in every department other than attack, at least this is what everyone says, but they still win more games than all. And CFC will be nowhere close to winning the title (here I hope to be proved right), they are not consistent enough. The same reason why we will not be close to winning it.

  23. I really hope this to be the case that at the end of the season, RVP to realise he could’ve done better with arsenal than those northern twats. Little boy inside me wants him to regret and plead future back to arsenal in front of arsenal fans ion his knees, just for arsenal to show back middle finger.
    One thing to be consider in the table with and without RVP is that they might’ve played chicarito or any other striker in his place, if if he wasnt there, who could score half of RVP’s goals and assits. Means they could’ve been hanging around arsenal in the table. And with their ‘pants’ defending, we could ve finish higher than them in the league which is better feeling.
    All this ifs, maybes are result of that little cunt inside him.
    We hate u van pussy and u r most disloyal professional anyone could’ve ever been!

  24. Dan "GoonerMD" says:

    Interesting read, Dan. I saw the RVP stats floating around twitter a few days ago and thought somebody would probably blog about it. I don’t always agree with things you conclude, but you manage to be thought provoking and I enjoy your prose as well.

    I agree with the others that it’s difficult to know where ManU would be without RVP, but experience tells us they’d find a way to be at the top regardless of who’s on the roster. It pains me to say it, but as a collective they accept nothing less of themselves, which is something Arsenal should strive to emulate. It is shocking though how much RVP has contributed to their table topping ways and it does make every one of us lust for that talent to be spearheading OUR attack. If’s and but’s were candied nuts and all that…

    I watched the Wigan game and while Utd managed to score a poacher’s effort somewhat against the run of play to start the scoring, RVP just stuck a dagger in them with the second. The wigan players were probably thinking, “well how can we compete against skill like that?” and Utd ran out 4-0. Without RVp that would have been more like a tense 1-0 or worse. Anyway, I ramble. Good post and happy new year.

  25. @pancofm says:

    RVP is a very touchy and sticky topic/issue/person to me. Truth be told, I hate mentioning his name and don’t wanna aggravate my anger by discussing him. Dave, you are a man of figures and I love the way you put things in perspective. People, pour your mind though. The cunt deserves your venom.

  26. Sean says:

    If Man U didn’t have RVP we would have another person in his position and ur basically saying Man U would lose without RVP that would make us down to 10 men we didn’t have RVP past season we come higher than arsenal when u did have RVP and we also beat U 8-2 when u had RVP so stop getting sour about losing ur best player he isn’t gonna stay at a dying club

    • Daniel Cowan says:

      Firstly, I’m not saying Man U would lose without RvP, I’m saying you would not be as good which all intelligent United fans I’ve spoken to would agree.

      Secondly, you would have another player but would they be as good or score/assist as much? That is debatable but again, most intelligent people concede that they mostly likely would not be as good.

      Thirdly, why have 90% of United fans assumed that you’d be playing with 10 men? And they have the nerve to call me stupid.

  27. Paul Taylor says:

    I’m sorry but even with RvP still at Arsenal you would still be in the same position you are now, Manchester United as a unit are far superior and he did the right thing jumping a sinking ship when he did, he gave you years of loyalty and got no medals to show for it, he’s finally found his home now and you Arsenal fans need to let go now and move on, your stats are false as whoever filled the same roll could have easily scored the goals or provided the assists, a total pointless post

    • Daniel Cowan says:

      I think it’s disrespectful to Robin’s talent to say that his goals/assists are easily replaced by someone else. If that was the case Fergie wouldn’t have spent £24m on a 29 year old with one fit season under his belt.

      Loyalty is a sore subject when it comes to RvP because Arsenal were loyal to him for many injury plagued years when if fit he could have been the difference and helped us win trophies.

      I dispute that Utd are a better unit as defensively you’ve been pants this season and a strong attack has masked this weakness.

      We’ll never agree nor be able to have an adult conversation without bias over the merits of our players on a per player comparison so I’ll leave it there but thank you for taking the time to comment.

  28. MistaKen says:

    You dont really believe RVP made a mistake leaving Arsenal do you? I’m an Arsenal fan and I just cant see why you would think that. We have to be honest despite our loyalty. May U left Arsenal behind as a serious threat many years ago. We may have good players but Man U have a much better manager and a first class team of coaches and backroom staff. We have Arsen Wenger calling all the shots. The manager alone cant motivate the players, train all the players, buy and sell players and manage the balance sheet.

    Look, AW is a good manager but he needs a new challenge where he will learn to accept help. He can no loger see the wood for the trees becuase he thinks he can do it all. I will be shot down here but I think Everton, Dortmand, Athletic Madrid and probably several other managers could take over at our club and be a success. Even the worst clubs in the PL dont sell their best players at the rate we do.

  29. JB says:

    I have never read so much rubbish in all my life. Why do gooners always try and make stuff up to make things look better than they are in real life?
    I have total respect for what arsenal have archived in their past but all the “what ifs” are not real. The facts are that the club haven’t won anything for years and are not likely to for the foreseeable future. It’s not the players fault for leaving its the clubs fault for not showing any ambition.
    As a Manchester United fan I used to love watching an arsenal v man utd game. It used to give me butterfly’s in my stomach before the game. Now it’s a as significant as playing Spurs or Everton.
    Wake up Arsenal fans and stop letting the club hierarchy spoil your fantastic footballing club. They are getting away with it because the fans are not being honest with themselves regarding who’s fault their decline is.

    • SB says:

      Totally agree except that its coming from a pampered ManU fan – pampered because 1) the richest club on these shores before the oil money came in 2) still the Refs favourite club (Fergi time, conterversial penalties to name a few) when required (read when in danger of losing touch at the top)
      One other point is the players who left, left for the money & trophies. Unfortunately we are not able to afford the former (lost Nasri, Cole, RVP, Song), hence in a viscous cycle of loosing players for the later (lost Cesc, RVP).

  30. Bleedingobvious says:

    He has gone from a team that flatters to deceive to a team that wins things and at 29 he has made the right decision for trophies as well as money, surely that’s obvious

  31. snipawes says:

    Like most gooners i was gutted when RVP left us for the warm weather up north, but i think even without him Utd would still be lying above us because someone else would have stepped up for them, last season they finished above us with out RVP and they maintained that gap with goals shared by all of thier attackers. Unfortunately the difference is, RVP for Arsenal kept us in the top four but RVP for Utd is keeping them uptop because he is ultimately in a better all round.

  32. The font says:

    I am looking for trigger av you seen him Dave

  33. RobM says:

    I don’t want to be rude, but as a gooner, this article embarasses me. You can’t say that United would be languishing in 11th place without his goals… or rather you can IF you assume that no one else in that team would have stepped up to score them , or that they wouldn’t have had someone else instead of RvP.

    As for his comments about a team of champions, yeah that hurts. But maybe, just maybe the thing to do is to examine them objectively and wonder if he has a point or not. If you were a forward who would you rather have playing behind you? Gervinho & Arshavin or Giggs and Valencia? If you were Giroud or Theo, who would you rather have on the roster as another forward to pick up the slack? Rooney or Chamakh?

    Squidward or Ferdinand? Evra or Santos?
    Yeah you can pick holes in some of my comparisons there but they’re no worse than your one about the goals…

    • Daniel Cowan says:

      But alas, you were rude.

      Why are so many people getting hung up on the 11th place part? Did you all lose the ability to read after that and completely miss the rest of the post?

    • SB says:

      RobM, certainly have a problem with your comparisons because you are comparing first teamers from one & squad players in the other. Try this Wilshere & Cleverly – both first teamers, similar age as well. If you want more try the GK, RB, positions. Not enough, try CBs. All of these positions I belive we – as in Arsenal, have better options. When u compare wingers – Walcott, Podolski, Ox are certainly on par with ManU wingers. In summary, the ManU squad is comparable to ours. The difference is RVP & Fergi (the bully).
      One comparison that definitely is closed is RVP is way better than the supposedly world class Rooney. So much for the hype created by the media about English players.

    • Daniel Cowan says:

      Exactly. My thoughts, pre-selling RvP to United & post signing Giroud, Podolski & Cazorla was that we matched up well with United.

      (Key: > – better than, < worse than, = equal to) Woj = De Gea - better shot stopper, better in the air, worse at kicking, worse at long shots. Equal Sagna > Rafael (Jenks is also a better defender & is better than Smalling/Jones at RB when they are used there)
      Gibbs < Evra - Although Evra is ageing and I think Gibbs will be better if he stays fit Vermaelen < Vidic - But Vidic has had injury problems Mertesacker = Ferdinand Koscielny > Smalling/Evans/Jones
      Arteta > Carrick
      Wilshere >>>> Cleverley
      Cazorla > Kagawa
      Podolski = Young
      Walcott = Valencia/Nani
      RvP > Rooney
      Giroud > Welbeck
      Chamakh <<< Hernandez Overall I felt Arsenal, player for player were equal to or better than United except for in defence and strength in numbers in attack and I felt that as a squad United had more winning mentality. However I felt that keeping RvP would have galvanised the squad especially with the exciting signings we made. RvP was the real difference. Our signings took us up to their level and their weakening defence and our improving one levelled the field a little and the difference would have been Robin but he left and doubled the difference.

  34. Jack says:

    Interesting article mate.

    I do agree that without RvP Man Utd would not be where they are at the moment, but sadly I still think they’d be above us. The current Utd squad have a sense of belief in themselves that is sorely lacking in the current Arsenal team. It’s so sad to watch the current team’s heads drop when we go behind or things aren’t clicking, it’s not a problem the truly great Wenger teams have had in the past. I know it’s hard to compete with the budgets some teams have available but it doesn’t seem like we’re even trying any more.

    I remember the days when players left Arsenal and almost always ended up ruining their careers and regretting the decision, with the possible exceptions of Vieira and Henry. Now it seems like leaving Arsenal is generally a step up. At least it won’t hurt as much to see RvP lift the title in May as it did last year when that lesbian lookalike midget Nasri did it.

  35. Goons_with_Guns says:

    You’re a twat, or a Twit, either way, you’re wrong. The Board forced Wenger and Le Wanker will never admit he made yet another mistake. F**k them all to Hell for ruining our club. Where are you Mr. Dein. please come in.

    • elkieno says:

      Your second sentence doesnt make sense, mate.
      Calm down and see that our club is not ruined, it is much better than before Wenger came in.
      Arsenal FC have 13 league titles and 10 FA Cups to our name, the 3rd most successfull in England. We have the record for being in top flight for almost 100 years without being relagated. We have far more trophies than Spurs, Chelsea combined and we got this by always being a club that could compete and when the down times came, we just absorbed it and came back to the top, over and over again.
      That is what a great club does and that is what we are doing now, it happens. Liverpools most successfull manager went 7 years baron.
      Longtime fans know this and can see this, we have highs and lows thinking it will be our time but then it just happens and bam, glory!
      When it is your time, you make the most of it etc…

  36. Gunner_n says:

    Rubbish mate (still good effort).

  37. Julien Durand says:

    The amount of hate this is getting is amusing.
    RvP IS Manchester United at the moment. I do think they’ll win the league, because despite their shocking defense, the Flying Dutchman always comes to their rescue.

    Were he in our current squad, he’d be carrying us as well. Not that either team NEEDS carrying, but RvP is a difference maker, and if he were still at Arsenal (with our new signings) then I think the table positions at the moment would probably be reversed,

    • Daniel Cowan says:

      Spot on although I’m not sure the roles would be reversed but I think the gap would be 5-6 points with our game in hand so theoretically we might only have been 2-3 points behind them with 17 games left.

  38. Big Terry Hollands says:

    The little boy inside was screaming take the money

    Cunt

  39. lewis brown says:

    Rvp was never loyal to arsenal, arsenal was loyal to him, we stood by him during his injuries, and he had a lot of injuries, if a team offered him a move let’s say three seasons ago then he would’ve left depending on the wage? If he was loyal to arsenal then he would’ve stood by us during the time that we needed him the most? And he never really done anything for us before last season anyway apart from score the equalising goals against barca at the emirates and birmingham in the carling cup final? So its safe to say that he had one good season at arsenal. Yeah, he might’ve scored the majority of arsenal’s goals last season but look at the stats? Something like 18 players scored for arsenals first team last year? So surely we don’t need him anyway… We will cope, and I guarantee that we’ll get top 4 this season.

  40. While you do have a point, I still think Man U would of bought a striker of decent quality anyway?

    SatelliteMan

    • Daniel Cowan says:

      I agree they would have but I guess my long winded point was that RvP is a special player & Man U would not have spent £24m on him if there was someone as good out there who was younger or cheaper. He is a “6 pointer” and what he adds to United he took away from Arsenal thus doubling the gap. They might have signed someone else but would they have scored and assisted 24 goals? I don’t think so because there was no one else in the league like him and overseas purchases would have taken time to settle and wouldn’t have been as effective as immediately as he was so it’s fair to think/believe that they would be at least 6-8 point worse off without him when you consider he has won them 27 points so taking off 6-8 is not unrealistic for his talent. That would reduce the current gap to 12 points.

      If he is capable of winning United 27 points he is at least capable of winning Arsenal half of that (13) or even half of that (6) which when added to our total would reduce the gap further to just 6 points with a game in hand.

      I’m not saying we would be better than United with him but I do believe that with our new signings and keeping RvP that we’d be close enough to still call ourselves challengers.

      Some say we wouldn’t have bought Podolski and Giroud if we kept RvP but they were signed before he was sold so it’s not unrealistic to say we could have kept him even if he didn’t re-sign.

  41. Dan P says:

    Yes Man Utd would have been in 11th spot if RVP wasn’t playing…but that’s assuming they were fielding 10 men in all those games. If they didn’t sign RVP, maybe they’d have signed Falcao. Or even Hernandez would have started more and they’d have bought a kick ass centre back…conceding less goals. Realistically, yes…they are better off with him in the team and wouldn’t have as many points etc etc. But 11th spot? Really? Never…

    • Daniel Cowan says:

      You’re getting hung up on 11th. That was put there for dramatic effect but I actually put United back into the title race without RvP because I know they’re a good team who knows how to win. I just think RvP has helped to cover their defensive frailties this season, he has won them 27 point out of 52 after all.

      My point was not to say United are crap without him but that he massively improves the team and papers over the defensive cracks. Now Vidic is back those cracks may disappear but that’s not to say that the damage wouldn’t have been done already. Arsenal suffered last year from an injury struck defence and it punished us.

      My thinking was that United would be a few points worse off without RvP and Arsenal would be a few better off thus making the gap significantly lower than 18 points. United may still have been above Arsenal in that scenario but the gap would not be unassailable.

  42. sandman says:

    you got to know how the club works before writing this. Arsenal are soo cheap that they would not have got half the players had robin stayed and he knew this. Next, Arsenal were the front runners so pay the guy fairly and problem solved. United are showing what happens when you pay going rates for a player so be mad at the board not Robin. Someone at another place of employment offers you a couple more dollars an hour then you’re going to leave (your lieing if you say otherwise). In this case he would have stayed with us even for LESS but our cheap board would rather stuff their pockets instead of the players we need.

    • Daniel Cowan says:

      Firstly, we bought those players before we sold RvP. We didn’t have to sell, we chose to. Even if he demanded to leave we didn’t have to let him.

      Secondly, if I was in Van Persie’s position where I make more money than I can spend and I have a settled family and am working for the company of my dreams (he claimed to be a boyhood Arsenal fan and his dream was to play for us) where I am loved and respected then no I would not move for a bigger wage as the extra money would not be able to be spent. Also, I would not move hundreds of miles away from where my family are settled. If a local company offered me double and I had no emotional connection to my current employer then maybe I would but not in the scenario Robin was in. But that’s just me.

  43. ozarsenal says:

    Its reported RVP has a 5 year contract worth over 100,000 per week but I cant see him not being injured or holding his form for that long Fergy does not care about the club because he wont be around he just wants to win the EPL this year ,RVP will be worth very little plus his wages it will be imposable to sell him on add the 25mil they paid for him maybe in the long term he has done what Arsenal could not do Hurt ManU in the pocket and squad player numbers which is 25 plus FFP comes in it will hurt them one hopes.

    • Justin21 says:

      Sadly, FFP won’t hurt united at all considering they are the biggest earner in the Premier League. So if they are any team that could afford to spend the most, it is also them.

  44. Bryan says:

    I am an Arsenal supporter but I dissagree with alot of this.
    Man Utd would not be a mid table team without him, they were 2nd last year & although I think we would be doing better with him, even with the new signings I still think we would be 3rd at best.
    Lets be honest there is something very wrong at Arsenal, for some reason the attitude & will to win of the players is missing more than at any other time under Wenger, I have never seen so many bad performances from an Arsenal team in one season & we are only half way through season.
    Personelly I also don’t believe it was just about money, I agree with RVP that Arsenal don’t show any ambition at all, which guts me but until we get rid of the useless idiots sitting in our boardroom, I can’t see this changing

  45. Nilesh Bhagat says:

    What is the point of the ‘statistical analysis’? In your own words it is ‘is all pie in the sky of course and there is no way of saying that any of this would actually have happened.’

    The point is that Ferguson saw a way to improve his team and made sure it happened. That is good management. If you still think that Arsenal can overhaul United this season then you need to have a lie down.

    • Daniel Cowan says:

      Scathe much?

      Did I offer statistical analysis? No I did not.

      You say the point is Fergie saw a way to improve his team… well that is exactly what this post was about. Keeping RvP with the signings we made would have improved this team.

      If you think that I actually said Arsenal can overhaul United this season then you need to lie down because there is clearly something wrong with your vision or your cognitive ability to process the written word.

    • Nilesh Bhagat says:

      Sorry, I was being too generous with the phrase ‘statistical analysis.’ You spend most of the article daydreaming about what might have happened if van Persie hadn’t signed for United and then you deconstruct it all yourself in one sentence. Pointless. Ferguson improved his team, Wenger didn’t.

      “I think Chelsea or City will win the league this year, however the little boy inside me (do you see what I did there ) still holds out hope that Arsenal can catch up”.

      If you think Chelsea or City will win the title and you also think we can catch those teams then you must think that we can overhaul Man United. In your scenario it would be impossible not to overhaul United if we caught up with the eventual league champions, i.e. City or Chelsea. That is called logic.

    • Daniel Cowan says:

      “Hope” – I’m saying I hope not that we will nor that I think we will.

      You never have anything constructive to say Nilesh so please just stop visiting my blog.

    • Nilesh Bhagat says:

      I guess ‘constructive’ means agreeing with you or am I having another cognition problem? Lighten up, you are a public forum and I reserve the right to visit and comment on whatever site I want.

      I enjoy some of your pieces and generally prefer your attitude to the more negative Arsenal sites but you are way off beam this time.

    • Daniel Cowan says:

      No, constructive means saying why you disagreed with the post. Sure, comment what you like, I reserve the right to spam it.

      What you fail to understand Nilesh is that I don’t get paid to churn out content. I write what I want, when I want. If you don’t like it, fine, that’s your opinion but unless you have something constructive to say or wish to enter a conversation just keep it to yourself.

      Way off beam? Do you even know what my beam is?

      Am I wrong to say that Van Persie is a fantastic player who has clearly made a difference at United or did Fergie spend £24m on a player with a risky injury record who probably wouldn’t add much to the team for the hell of it?

      If you concede that RvP is a top player who does make a difference then am I wrong to say that losing him reduced our quality and increased United’s thus doubling the gap in quality?

      Am I also wrong to speculate (crucial word that, speculate) that without RvP and with their injury problems, defensive issues and creative issues leading to a reliance on a 38 year old who they’ve had to bring out of retirement that United would have fewer points than they have now? Is it wrong to exaggerate the impact that RvP has had by winning 27 points out of 52 for United to say it fair to surmise that without him they wouldn’t have picked up 27 of those 27 points? Is it off beam to suggest that maybe they would drop 6 of those points without someone of his quality, a game-changer as they say? Would it then be off beam to say that if he is capable of adding 6 points to United that he could have added the same to our total if he had stayed thus reducing the gap to 6 points with a game in hand or better?

      If you think that is all a waste of time speculation then fine but don’t waste your time telling me or even reading it all.

      If you think that my speculation over RvP is nonsense and “off beam” then you doubt the quality of the player and as such are off beam yourself. Good day to you.

    • Nilesh Bhagat says:

      Isn’t this a conversation? Anyway, good luck with it all.

    • Daniel Cowan says:

      No, this is a spat ;-). We’re not really conversing are we, we’re sniping at one another.

      I like how you’ve entirely side-stepped my questions though.

  46. goonerboy tom says:

    forget the romantic idea of players growing up with dreams of playing for their club and then becoming life long players there when they are older. The notion that someone would play for a team through thick and thin because they supported them as a kid, eventually being rewarded for all their effort and commitment by being lavished with silverware and legendary status. Its rubbish, its fantasy. How many top top level players (starting to sound like arsene) do you know who have stuck through thick and thin with a club who go through a long period of poor performance? off the top of my head I can think of only one in the premier league and thats steven gerrard. do you remember wayne rooney saying he was an everton boy for life and he’d never leave? yeah, exactly. He went because at the end of the day, he wanted success and trophies, and to be honest, if you look at the facts, what has he won at united, and what has everton done since? He’s actually been totally justified, if he happens to pick up a bigger pay check for his troubles then why wouldnt he?

    Look, this is modern football, this is how it operates, players are fickle, agents are sharks, I dont like it at all, but this isnt the playground, things dont happen because they are ‘fair’, this is big boy stuff, and the club has to operate in a manner which leads to success in this environment, not a way in which they think is righteous or moraly superior, because they think certain players elsewhere are being payed to much or tranferred for too much money. At the end of the day its the board and AW’s responsibility to keep the club in a position where they can win, and if you have to make descisions you dont like (such as keeping a player to keep him away from direct competitors even if it loses you money) then sometimes you have to strap on a pair and say ‘im doing this not because i like it, but because I know in the long run it is good for the club’.

    what im trying to get at, is that I feel the worst outcome of this whole situation isnt that rvp has left, that was always on the cards anyway. No, the worst thing is that by leaving, he has shown the rest of the footballing world that we are not movers and shakers any more. All this bullshit penny pinching in transfer negotiations filters down through the press, and even if we know its just papers being papers and putting an anti arsenal spin, OTHER agents, players, fans even, read this and guess what, none of it makes us look like a more attractive place to come.

    ‘oh i want to sign for arsenal because they drive a hard bargain, have steadfast financials, and have the most impressive profit and loss sheet from transfers in europe’

    hardly.

    we no longer prepared to bite the bullet in the name of winning. The reasons behind our inability to keep our best (financial, footballing, whatever) are kind of irrelevant now, we’ve put ourselves in a position where players dont think were contenders, agents think were too difficult to deal with, all of which is going to fuck us in the transfer market in the future. its wrecked our purchasing power.

    as much as i hate old purple nose, he has and always has had, a far better idea of how his actions may affect the clubs stature relative to those other clubs around him.

    rant over.

  47. Torannio Hightower says:

    Makes me hate Wenger even more…

  48. goonerboytom says:

    forget the romantic idea of players growing up with dreams of playing for their club and then becoming life long players there when they are older. The notion that someone would play for a team through thick and thin because they supported them as a kid, eventually being rewarded for all their effort and commitment by being lavished with silverware and legendary status. Its rubbish, its fantasy. How many top top level players (starting to sound like arsene) do you know who have stuck through thick and thin with a club who go through a long period of poor performance? off the top of my head I can think of only one in the premier league and thats steven gerrard. do you remember wayne rooney saying he was an everton boy for life and he’d never leave? yeah, exactly. He went because at the end of the day, he wanted success and trophies, and to be honest, if you look at the facts, what has he won at united, and what has everton done since? He’s actually been totally justified, if he happens to pick up a bigger pay check for his troubles then why wouldnt he?

    Look, this is modern football, this is how it operates, players are fickle, agents are sharks, I dont like it at all, but this isnt the playground, things dont happen because they are ‘fair’, this is big boy stuff, and the club has to operate in a manner which leads to success in this environment, not a way in which they think is righteous or moraly superior, because they think certain players elsewhere are being payed to much or tranferred for too much money. At the end of the day its the board and AW’s responsibility to keep the club in a position where they can win, and if you have to make descisions you dont like (such as keeping a player to keep him away from direct competitors even if it loses you money) then sometimes you have to strap on a pair and say ‘im doing this not because i like it, but because I know in the long run it is good for the club’.

    what im trying to get at, is that I feel the worst outcome of this whole situation isnt that rvp has left, that was always on the cards anyway. No, the worst thing is that by leaving, he has shown the rest of the footballing world that we are not movers and shakers any more. All this bullshit penny pinching in transfer negotiations filters down through the press, and even if we know its just papers being papers and putting an anti arsenal spin, OTHER agents, players, fans even, read this and guess what, none of it makes us look like a more attractive place to come.

    ‘oh i want to sign for arsenal because they drive a hard bargain, have steadfast financials, and have the most impressive profit and loss sheet from transfers in europe’

    hardly.

    we no longer prepared to bite the bullet in the name of winning. The reasons behind our inability to keep our best (financial, footballing, whatever) are kind of irrelevant now, we’ve put ourselves in a position where players dont think were contenders, agents think were too difficult to deal with, all of which is going to fuck us in the transfer market in the future. its wrecked our purchasing power.

    as much as i hate old purple nose, he has and always has had, a far better idea of how his actions may affect the clubs stature relative to those other clubs around him.

  49. naz says:

    Since you like ‘statistics’, here’s 1…”Players who have quit Arsenal ovr the last 7 years have amassed 44 winners’ medals between them at 11 difft clubs, while those who stayed at the Emirates have empty trophy cabinets.’

  50. Prince gooner says:

    Daniel Daniel Dear Daniel I mean denial, it’s clear to me your a passionate Arsenal fan but your dealing with ifs but and hypothetical situations.

    What you need to understand is RVP was right to leave Arsenal the prove is they haven’t won titles for last 7 years this year maybe their ‘8th year’.
    Rvp is 29 years and cannot be told about potential or what could happen as these are no indications of certainties
    But the reality is he has a better chance of winning with Manchester united than Arsenal.

    And you Article and the assumption that Arsenal could have been closer to title leaders is absurd, Arsenal haven’t had a good chance of winning league since 2005 .
    nor do I as a Gooner hold any animosity towards Rvp he is a talented player, who deserves titles and I hope Rvp wins with United since I do not see Arsenal winning it, and currently prefer them to chavski and arabcity.

    • Daniel Cowan says:

      Your attempt at humour by changing my name to denial was weak.

      Arsenal were also only 4 point off the title in 2008 so you’re obviously a very passionate Gooner who pays close attention to the club.

      Of course this is ifs buts and maybes, I said that countless times in the blog. You overlook the fact that RvP has scored or assisted 24 goals, helping United to 27 points of their 52 total. That’s over half.

      The blog was quite obviously (to anyone who bothered to read it properly) about highlighting the difference he makes to a team and how we probably would be closer to United with him. You need to realise that United would most likely have fewer points if they had not signed him and Arsenal would most likely have more if they kept him… As the pundits say, that’s a 6 pointer.

      If you think he wouldn’t be the difference then you doubt his talent which would be foolishly misguided.

    • Prince gooner says:

      Calm down denial it was pretty good joke actually but nevertheless, I feel like taking you out to dinner sweetheart and me and you can reminist on times if we had Rvp and he never came to united we would have been close to the titles.
      tut tut tut dajavu

      Lets hold hands and sing kumbaya kumbaya come on altogether now kumbaya kumbaya.

      I hope you get over the fact rvp is gone, i might buy you some Kleenex you see how nice i am.

    • Daniel Cowan says:

      Your jokes are almost as bad as your spelling, grammar and punctuation. Almost.

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