Robin Van Persie Injury: What RVP's Muscle Strain Means for Manchester United

Dan Talintyre@@dantalintyreSenior Analyst IISeptember 12, 2012

For all those that have missed the news, Manchester United striker Robin van Persie failed to finish his international match for Holland yesterday—leaving the field at halftime due to injury and sparking mass fears across the English Premier League.

Well, for United fans, anyway. Arsenal fans could be seen dancing and celebrating as far as the eye could see.

The Red Devils' summer transfer picked up a thigh injury after being hit by the knee of a Hungarian defender—most likely corking his thigh to some extent—and was taken out of the match at the interval by coach Louis van der Gaal (per Eurosport).

Van der Gaal went on to state that just because the star striker was substituted, it did not mean that there was any serious injury to report, stating:

"We took Robin off for precautionary measures. It doesn't seem to be too serious, but you never know. We didn't want to take any risks..."

With Manchester United set to play Wigan Athletic in the Premier League this weekend, Robin van Persie's health is naturally a topic of great contention. Let's explore what his muscle strain means for the Red Devils.


If It's Serious

If there is indeed an injury to Van Persie's leg that will force him out of action this weekend, the big question that follows is for how long. And as far as we know and can speculate, that would most likely be only the one match.

If it's serious—and that's a big if—then Manchester United would be forced to play at Old Trafford without either of their star strikers, with England international Wayne Rooney still recovering from the leg gash that he suffered earlier in the season.

That would leave the Red Devils with Danny Welbeck, Javier Hernandez, Bebe, Nick Powell and Angelo Henriquez to choose from their starting lineup, and you'd assume that the England international Welbeck would be the player most likely to get the nod from Sir Alex Ferguson.

Welbeck is still going to be a key component of United's attack this year across all domestic and European competitions, and as shown in his most recent international fixture, he is certainly still one of the top strikers in the Premier League.

His arrival into United's starting squad would be one that kept the Red Devils very strong in attack and difficult to contain against the Lactics.

Formation wise, you'd have to suggest that Ferguson could be tempted to utilize a 4-2-3-1 formation—with Welbeck the lone striker at the top. Michael Carrick and Tom Cleverly would play as the two defensive midfielders, with Shinji Kagawa in the middle and Antonio Valencia and Ashley Young/Nani on their respective wings.


If It's Not Serious

If Van Persie's injury is not serious—which I expect that we'll soon learn it's not—United will most likely line up with the Dutch international as their talisman against Wigan.

The 29-year-old has been superb since moving from Arsenal over the summer transfer window, netting a sensational volley against Fulham, before picking up a hat-trick against Southampton and rescuing the Red Devils from an embarrassing defeat.

He could make way for Welbeck or Hernandez some time in the second half in United are in control of the match and Ferguson wants to rest his star striker, who could still be carrying the niggling injury. You'd have to think that with the attacking options available to him, this is certainly a real possibility for the Red Devils against Wigan.


Bottom Line

The bottom line is quite simple: If Van Persie's injury is serious, United can adequately cover him in Welbeck. If it's not serious, Van Persie will play Saturday against Wigan.

I can't see the Dutch international missing any time at all with the muscle strain—perhaps a week at the absolute most—and I assume he'll be available for selection this weekend for Manchester United. Hopefully time will give us a better indication of just how Van Persie is traveling.

United fans will be desperately hoping that it's nothing.


Is there anything to worry about here with Robin van Persie's injury?

Comment below or hit me up on Twitter:


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