Arsenal Transfers: Denying Robin Van Persie's Departure Is a Mistake

Raul HingoraniCorrespondent IIJuly 18, 2012

ROTTERDAM, NETHERLANDS - MAY 30:  Robin van Persie of Netherlands jogs during the International Friendly between the Netherlands and Slovakia at De Kuip Stadion on May 30, 2012 in Rotterdam, Netherlands.  (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)
Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

Arsenal has been one of the hot clubs so far in this summer's transfer window. Arsenal were quick to get to work by signing two good forwards, Lukas Podolski and Olivier Giroud.

However, bringing in players hasn't been the only aspect of Arsenal's plan for this transfer window.

Arsenal might also be looking to clear some of the dead wood from their squad to leave room to bring in more talented players to the team.

One story though for Arsenal has been one of the stories of this summer in terms of transfers. The Robin van Persie saga has been the story of this transfer window.

Last season, the Dutch forward had his best season, scoring 30 goals in 38 appearances in the Premier League to win the Golden Boot. He made it known to the world of football that he is the player to follow and watch.

With that, he has been looking with a move away from the Gunners. Clubs like Manchester City, Juventus and Manchester United are all in the chase to sign the prolific scorer. But, up to this point in the transfer window, van Persie is still at Arsenal.

Very recently, reported that Arsenal will not allow the Dutchman to leave the club this summer. This means that he will either have the chance to change his mind and extend his contract or he could end up leaving as a free transfer next summer.

Some people might think that this is good. The forward might be able to have another great season, and if all is good, he might even decide to extend his contract.

However, there is another side to this.

Van Persie is a player who has spent a large portion of his Arsenal career injured. It was only because he didn't suffer any injury that he was able to perform so well last season. If the earlier part of his Arsenal career wasn't riddled with injuries, it is probable that he would have hit this great form much earlier.

So, this injury risk could still run for next season. He could suffer an injury in October, let's say, and his season could finish with a flash. Then, if he decides not to extend his contract, he would leave for free, not having made a significant impact for Arsenal in his last season.

It would be regretted as Arsenal could have sold him this summer and could have signed a young talented forward who would be able to help Arsenal now, and become an even better player in a couple of years.

Arsenal have been linked with forwards such as Robert Lewandowski (the Guardian) and Stevan Jovetic (Daily Mail). Both of these players are very young and have already proven that they have what it takes to compete at the high level of football that the Premier League offers.

Jovetic is only 22 years old, and Lewandowski is just 23 years old.

They could have been used as long-term and short-term reinforcements for the club; it would also aid in the process of moving on from the Dutchman.

New signing Olivier Giroud was actually intended to be a replacement for van Persie, according to This means that Arsenal was getting ready to prepare for life without van Persie.

However, postponing this process by disallowing van Persie's departure is not going to help the Gunners.

Other big clubs like Chelsea and Manchester United have also been strengthening their squad with players such as Eden Hazard and Shinji Kagawa.

So if Arsenal lets van Persie leave for free next summer, then they might not necessarily have the funds to sign a talented player to strengthen the attack and make the club a title contender for the 2013-14 season.

Keeping van Persie for another season makes Arsenal's rebuilding process even harder than it needs to be. 

But, if van Persie extends his contract, this situation won't be as bad as it seems. 

Then, the Dutchman could make more contributions with the Gunners, and if he wishes, he could leave with a price tag, which would allow Arsenal to slowly rebuild.

So, for Arsenal to come out of this transfer saga having benefited from the situation, van Persie must either decide to extend his contract, or Arsenal must allow the striker to leave with a price tag this summer.

Well, if van Persie doesn't extend his contract, do you think the Dutchman should leave next summer for free or this summer with a price?