"Van Persie is the complete player. He has the entire package. He is a good footballer, but he scores loads of goals at the same time.” -Lionel Messi
You know a football player is exceptional when Leo Messi gives a public statement, complimenting him. This is Robin van Persie. A versatile player, who could play as a left-winger, or a second striker, or a central forward. A player, who could provide assists, score loads of goals, and orchestrate team’s attacking play by building up through passes. He is regarded as one of the best strikers of his generation, and also, he is the all-time top scorer for the Netherlands men's national team. When there is an article on a high-profile player like Robin van Persie, you ought to know some facts about him.
Let’s explore facts about Robin van Persie.
Below, you’ll read some facts about Robin van Persie.
Wonder about Robin van Persie childhood? Well,Van Persie was born in Rotterdam to an artistic family. José Ras, his mother, is a painter and jewelry designer who also teaches to children with special needs. Bob, his father, is a sculptor.
His father claims that when Van Persie was a born, a clairvoyant told him what his son would go on to achieve: "She told me that he would be in the Dutch national team, that he would be a king on the field."
After Van Persie's parents divorced he was brought up by his father. At school, Van Persie was one of the most misbehaved children and was excluded from class almost daily.
Robin van Persie has enjoyed a long and successful career by playing for two English Premier League giants, Arsenal and Manchester United. Let us begin our journey of facts about Robin van Persie by exploring his career.
Robin Van Persie career commenced in year 2001 in Feyenoord, and made his debut for the club at 17, the first of 15 total starts during the 2001–02 season. After starting for Feyenoord in the final of the UEFA Cup, Van Persie received the KNVB Best Young Talent award.
The subsequent season, Van Persie signed a three-and-a-half-year professional contract with Feyenoord, and scored five goals in a 6–1 KNVB Cup battering of AGOVV Apeldoorn on 6 February 2003. However, clashes with his manager Bert van Marwijk saw Van Persie demoted to the reserve squad. During a match featuring the Feyenoord and Ajax reserves, he was one of several Feyenoord players beaten by hooligans who had invaded the pitch. Van Persie's split with Van Marwijk continued when he was sent home on the eve of the 2002 UEFA Super Cup final against Real Madrid after the coach was dissatisfied with Van Persie's body language after being asked to warm up for a Champions League qualifier. Van Persie finished his unbridled first full season with the first team having scored eight goals in a total of 28 appearances, in addition to finishing runner-up in the KNVB Cup.
Feyenoord ineffectively attempted to extend Van Persie's contract during the off-season, and his failing relationship with Van Marwijk led to his spending most of the 2003–04 season on the bench. He again played 28 matches, but finished with two fewer goals than the previous season. Feyenoord offered him to clubs at the end of the campaign but found few takers due to Van Persie's past disciplinary issues.
During the January transfer window, the Eredivisie club opened negotiations with Arsenal, who were seeking a long-term replacement for mature veteran Dennis Bergkamp, but both parties could not agree to terms. Van Persie returned to Feyenoord in 2018. On May 12th 2019, he played his last professional match as a footballer, and it is a pity Feyenoord was defeated 2-0 by ADO Den Haag.
Unlike a sketchy 2004-2005 season, Robin van Persie started the 2005-2006 season on a good note scoring eight goals in eight matches to acclaim the Player of the Month award in November 2005. His impressive start made Arsenal extend his contract with 5 years to expire in 2011. Sadly, for him, he was injured in an FA Cup match against Cardiff benching him for most of the season.
His performance in the 2006-2007 season was on the dominance gaining him Rotterdam Sportsman of the Year and his magnificent goal against Charlton Athletic being nominated and selected as BBC Sport’s Goal of the Month. But once again, Robin van Persie was hit by a metatarsal injury during a celebration of an equalizer goal in a match against Manchester United. He ended that season with 13 goals in all competitions. Van Persie had an impressive career with Arsenals serving the club as vice-captain and later captain and scoring 132 goals to become Arsenal's 8th all-time goal scorer. He also won several honors including the Barclays Player of the Month on numerous occasions.
At the end of the 2011-2012 season, the Dutchman refused to extend his contract with Arsenal going ahead to sign for Manchester United. His deal with Manchester United involved an initial £22.5 million, with an additional £1.5 million to follow if United won a Premier League or Champions League title in the next four years.
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The Dutchman made his debut for Manchester United in the 2012-2013 season as a substitute in a match against Everton and scored his first goal in a 3-2 win against Fulham. His first hat trick also followed on September 2, in a 3-2 victory over Southampton. Robin van Persie was in top-notch form that season and in spite of picking some injuries, his season ended on an excellent note. His form in the 2013-2014 was also not disappointing, scoring some crucial goals for the club. He continued to the 2014-2015 season with ups and down coupled with injuries. His contract was not extended upon expiration, which made him join Fenerbahçe in the Turkish Super Lig.
On 14 July 2015, Van Persie joined Turkish side Fenerbahçe on a three-year deal for a fee claimed by Fenerbahçe to be £3.84 million. He was given the number 10 shirt. He and his former United teammate Nani debuted two weeks later in a goalless home draw against Shakhtar Donetsk in the third qualifying round of the season's Champions League, with Van Persie being a 68th-minute substitute for Moussa Sow. His league debut came on 14 August as a 60th-minute substitute for Fernandão in a 2–0 win at Eskişehirspor. Six days later, he scored his first goal for his new club: as a late substitute for Sow, he headed the only goal away to Atromitos Athens in the first leg of the Europa League play-offs, with his first of only two touches in the entire match. Van Persie scored his first domestic goal for the club on his first start on 23 August, finishing Nani's perfect pin-point pass for the opening goal in a 1–1 draw at Çaykur Rizespor.
Robin van Persie played at different levels of the Netherlands national teams. He was part of the Under-21 squad that competed at the 2004 European Championship qualifying. He was called to the FIFA World Cup squad preventing him from taking part in the 2006 U-21 European Championship. He made his senior team debut at 2006 FIFA World Cup qualifying game against Romania. The Netherlands qualified to play in the 2006 World Cup, and he played in all four matches at the tournament scored only a goal.
Robin van Persie continued his international feature for the Dutch team at the UEFA Euro 2008 scoring two exceptional goals before being eliminated at the quarterfinals round. His other tournaments include 2010 FIFA World Cup scoring a goal, UEFA Euro 2012 and again in the 2014 FIFA World Cup scoring four goals in the tournament. He was also named FIFA man of the match in their game against Spain. His last competition for the national team was at the 2016 UEFA Euro. Time to go through the next item on our list of facts about Robin van Persie.
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Next on our list of facts about Robin van Persie, we want to take a look at his private life. Robin Van Persie wife is the lovely Moroccan, Bouchra. Also in the case of Robin van Persie children, you have to know that he has two. A son called Shaqueel and a daughter called Dina. At one time when a journalist asked if he would consider converting to be equal with his wife, he had a perfect response for the question. He replied: “I have been raised liberally. If you want to become a Muslim, it should come from the heart. I would not do it just to please my wife. To believe for me is just a quest for being a good man.” In 2005, Robin Van Persie once served a 15 days jail term in Rotterdam, Netherlands after a woman accused him of raping her in a hotel room while on duty with the national side.
The incidence almost rocked his young one-year marriage with his wife even threatening to leave. However, Bouchra stayed with his husband and they have remained together up to date.
Luckily, he was cleared of any wrong doing a year later after the case lacked sufficient evidence.
According to Robin van Persie transfermarket, he has played 594 competitive matches, scoring a total number of 274 goals. His highest market value was 52.25 million dollars in June 2012. Ironically, on the same year, Arsenal sold van Persie to Manchester United with a fee of 33.77 million dollars, much less than his market value.
Last, but not least, we want to talk about Robin van Persie achievements on our list of Facts about Robin van Persie. This list is extremely long and fruitful. However, we tried to make it as short as we can. Robin van Persie’s personal awards include Netherlands all-time top scorer,Dutch Football Talent of the Year (1), KNVB Best Young Talent Award (1), Premier League Player of the Month (5),BBC Goal of the Season (1), BBC Goal of the Month five times, Premier League Golden Boot Landmark Award (3), Premier League Golden Boot (2): 2011–12, 2012–13 and PFA Players' Player of the Year (1).
Others include PFA Fans' Player of the Year (1), Premier League PFA Team of the Year (2), FWA Footballer of the Year (1): 2011–12, ESM Team of the Year (1): 2011–12, Arsenal Player of the Season (1), Sir Matt Busby Player of the Year (1), Manchester United Goal of the Season (1): April 2013 vs Aston Villa, 2014 FIFA World Cup Man of the Match (1): vs Spain
Van Persie started his senior club career as a left winger and possessed an exceptional ball control and was also a talented striker of the ball. He was bought by Arsenal as a long-term replacement for Dennis Bergkamp. Manager Arsène Wenger planned to adapt Van Persie from a left winger to a central forward as he had successfully done with star player Thierry Henry. He was at first mostly positioned as a supporting forward in League Cup and FA Cup matches. Due to the retirement of Bergkamp and parting of Freddie Ljungberg, Van Persie was given a starting role to play alongside Henry as a second striker upfront.
The exodus of Emmanuel Adebayor and Henry meant the Dutchman was now the main striker in Wenger's 4–3–3 system and very successfully played further upfront as a pure striker, winning the Premier League Golden Boot twice in a row. Van Persie is also a set piece expert and a vast number of his assists come from both corners and freekicks. He is also a proven direct freekick taker scoring regularly for his club and country.
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