Robin van Persie has been an excellent Premier League striker for many years, but is it the right time for Manchester United to let him go?
The Dutchman has eight goals and two assists in the Premier League so far this season but his displays have been far from convincing, with the striker has failed to find consistent form.
Under Louis Van Gaal, the goals have not been free-flowing at United and it has led to many doubting whether both Robin Van Persie and Radamel Falcao can consistently provide the goals to get Manchester United back into the Champions League. Both strikers have struggled with injuries this season and they seem to lack the sharpness that is such a vital aspect to their game.
However, Falcao needs time to adjust to the rigours of the Premier League and when he has played he has looked more of a threat than van Persie. When considering the Dutchman, van Persie is now 31-years-old and is not getting any younger, so United may feel that selling him at the end of the season might be a good move for both parties.
It is no secret that the Red Devils may look to spend big next summer. United’s executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward has claimed that the club will have no budget in the summer window. If this is the case, getting rid of van Persie would open up a potential move for a new, younger, more prolific striker.
There is no doubt that on his day, Robin van Persie is world class, but those days seem to be few and far between this season and the potential of spending big money on a new striker could be a tempting proposition for the United board.
Robin van Persie’s current contract at Old Trafford runs out in the summer of 2016, so if United were to cash in on the striker, the summer would be the best time to do it. However, the forward will want to prove to the manager that he can still perform consistently at the highest level. At the beginning of the season, many would have predicted an attacking trio of Falcao, van Persie and Rooney to score stacks of goals. The strikers may need time to adapt to Van Gaal’s new formation but it remains to be seen whether the manager and the United board will be patient, especially when they know they have a huge transfer budget in the summer.
If van Persie manages to get 20 Premier League goals by the end of the season, you’d expect him to remain at the club at see out the remaining year of his contract. But his recent ankle injury will do him no favours and he will have to go on an impressive goalscoring run to reach that figure. Unfortunately for the striker, it looks as if the Manchester United squad will experience yet another overhaul in the summer and, at this particular moment in time, van Persie could be one of the big names to leave the club.
The blame for Manchester United’s lack of success so far this season should not lie solely with the strike force, as the service has been poor from midfield at times. However, if things do not improve from now until the end of the season, van Persie may find that his days as United’s main striker could well be over.