Robin van Persie lifts lid on Arsenal regrets as he takes aim at ex-chief Ivan Gazidis


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Robin van Persie has revealed his regrets over the way he left Arsenal back in 2012 – and also took a pop at former Gunners chief Ivan Gazidis for his part in the move to Manchester United.
A hero at the Emirates during his time at the club, the Dutchman broke Arsenal fans’ hearts by switching allegiances to Manchester United eight years ago.
The now-retired striker went on to win the Premier League the following season, finishing as the division’s top goalscorer in a fine maiden season at Old Trafford.
But, looking back, Van Persie admits he could have gone about his business in a different way – having written an open letter to Gunners fans that didn’t go down too well.
Speaking on The High Performance Podcast, Van Persie said: “It was not only between me and Arsene Wenger, there was more happening with Ivan of course and the way he behaved and the way he handled the whole situation.
“If I look back at that whole situation, I have to look at myself as well, where I could have done better or could have done something differently. If I look back, that open letter I shouldn’t have done that.
“If I look back at that, in such a delicate, difficult situation of making a transfer after spending so much time at Arsenal, to make a decision to write an open letter to tell my truth in two pages was impossible.
“I think back then it went to the newspaper because there was not social media. So I did that, and that was because I was disappointed with Ivan and his behaviour.
“But I could not go into detail about what exactly back then, because it’s just impossible to tell the whole story behind it. And partly it was the fact that Arsenal did not offer me a new deal. So if I look back at that, I should have done that better.”
When asked about the open letter, Van Persie went on to explain his regrets but also singled out Gazidis for criticism.
He added: “And I get that (the criticism). But I can promise you on my kids, if someone comes with proof that Arsenal offered me a deal, I will give you a million [pounds] now, today.
“It was Arsenal’s decision not to offer me a deal and that is up to them. After many conversations it became clear that we had different ideas about the club.
“I had seven points where I thought Arsenal could improve and in my opinion those seven points they should start dealing with them straight away to be able to compete with the best teams.
“It doesn’t really matter what points they are, what matters is that Ivan decided that he didn’t agree with one single point of those seven points – which is fair enough.
“So taking that information on board, Arsenal doesn’t offer me a deal, they didn’t agree with my views – which were only to help, honest views of how the club should move forward – that is a very clear message.
‘For me it is not an issue anymore, that’s life. That’s life at the top clubs, businesses make decisions and players as well in this case do as well. I’m perfectly happy with how it ended up, I went to Manchester United, we won the league, so it’s perfectly fine for me.
“I’m not angry with Ivan. I’m grateful to have worked with Arsene for eight years, he played such a crucial part in my career. I can honestly say that without his influence I would not have been the player I ended up becoming. So I’m happy, I’m thankful, it’s just that there are certain facts that you can’t look away from.
“Ivan and me didn’t really click, that can happen as well. But it’s a big man’s world and there is a moment where you have to move on.”
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