LONDON: Could this be more bad news for Arsene Wenger?
The Arsenal boss lost Cesc Fabregas last summer to Barcelona and now here’s striker Robin van Persie at the Barca team hotel in London.
Van Persie, who has just one year left on his Emirates contract, was seen chatting to fellow Dutchman and Barca striker Ibrahim Afellay, and was also hoping to catch up with former teammate Fabregas.
Gunners fans will be hoping it amounts to nothing more than that!
Meanwhile, van Persie has been accused of being a sore loser by Wigan’s Gary Caldwell after Latics’ shock win at Arsenal.
On a seismic night in the relegation battle, Gunners skipper van Persie appeared to refuse to shake hands with Latics counterpart Caldwell and Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger stomped down the tunnel without waiting to press the flesh with opposite number Roberto Martinez.
As Wigan’s fourth win in five games sent them surging five points clear of the quicksands, Arsenal’s flouncing and squeals about time-wasting in their 2-1 defeat on Monday reflected poorly on a club that likes to trade on a currency of class.
Van Persie’s 34 goals this season have made him a deserving front-runner for the PFA’s Player-of-the-Year gong, but he was ungracious in defeat towards a fellow captain — who had even voted for him!
RVP and Caldwell had squared up seconds before the end of Arsenal’s anaemic defeat — it was more purses than handbags — and, like his manager, the Dutchman mislaid the art of being gracious in defeat.
Caldwell said: “I think to be at a great club like Arsenal you have to be a bad loser — but I also think you need to have a bit of dignity at the end.
“When we got beat 4-0 by Arsenal at the DW Stadium, I shook everybody’s hand and I expect the same back.
“He’s obviously unhappy — when I went to shake his hand, he threw me away and then just gave me a wee pat, which is disappointing.
“Robin van Persie is a fantastic player because he has that will to win, and you wouldn’t want to change that part of him, but it’s just disappointing from my point of view.
“I suppose other greats wouldn’t have done that, but he’s a great player and a fantastic ambassador for Arsenal. These moments happen when you’re disappointed at the performance and the result, but it was much about nothing.”