This is a short guest post from Sam Ruback, who retweets shedloads of good Arsenal stuff that saves me the trouble of following all kinds of dweebs and clogging my timeline with their less interesting stuff. Follow Sam on twitter: @SamuelRuback
A couple of thoughts on the accusation from certain journalists and fans that ‘Arsenal shouldn’t have let RvP’s contract get to this stage’, particularly after Nasri’s sale in 2011. It’s important to note that regardless of the number of established players Arsenal have sold in recent years, particularly to Man City, Nasri’s sale is the only real contractual comparable (one year remaining on deal).
RvP signed a 4-year deal in 2009. The earliest he patently deserved a pay rise after good form and fitness was 2011. Yes, that’s the same 2011 when RvP said he wouldn’t be discussing a new deal. Now, there’s a lot Arsenal could and should be doing as an elite club, namely contesting big prizes better and paying stars more. However, there really is little more the club could have done in this specific situation short of giving RvP a 10-year deal in 2009, which would have made no financial or sporting sense based on the previous five years.
I’m not dwelling on Arsenal’s shortfalls as a club or the desires of established players leaving the club, as they’re painfully cyclical. Players want more money and medals; constantly selling said good players makes this more difficult for Arsenal to achieve. Repeat ad infinitum. I have just wanted to make the point that regarding Van Persie’s contract individually, Arsenal couldn’t have done much more. It’s easy to want to attack the club from all angles when there are disappointments such as Van Persie’s announcement to not renew, but this shouldn’t be one.
Certain journalists like to paint Arsenal as almost negligent (a word awfully abused and overused in football parlance) in allowing RvP’s deal to reach one year remaining, yet freely ignore the leaps of faith the club often takes in rewarding oft injured players (as the club did with RvP in 2009), or up and coming ones. As ever balance and perspective is glossed over at times like this. I hope this has restored some, purely on RvP’s contract situation.
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