Manchester United Transfer News: Red Devils Must Sell Robin Van Persie

Dan Brett@@DanBrett90Contributor IIIMarch 6, 2014

Robin van Persie has fallen out of favour with David Moyes.
Robin van Persie has fallen out of favour with David Moyes.Jon Super/Associated Press

If Manchester United are keen to return to winning ways, they should look to offload Robin van Persie.

The Dutch striker, who joined the club from Arsenal in 2012, has scored just 11 Premier League goals this season and started just 15 of the Red Devils' 27 Premier League matches, per

However, the 30-year-old has scored four goals in his last five league appearances, which would lend itself to believe that he had turned a corner under Moyes' management.

The Daily Mail's Ian Ladyman wrote of the forward's decline in form, largely due to injury, which has made Moyes look elsewhere as he rebuilds his United squad:

Moyes has persistently defended the 30-year-old in public and denied suggestions of problems between the two. However, Sportsmail understands the United manager has recently expressed private frustrations about Van Persie and is beginning to wonder if last season’s top scorer can be relied upon in the long term.

Van Persie’s goal record this season is good but his partnership with Wayne Rooney reached a new low when the duo hardly passed to each other in the Champions League defeat at Olympiacos.

With talk of an Old Trafford exit, Mirror's Paul Gorst believes that Chelsea are among three clubs to be ready to snatch the striker's services:

The Premier League leaders are thought to be in the market for a striker this summer, with manager Jose Mourinho becoming increasingly disgruntled with efforts from the trio of Fernando Torres, Samuel Eto'o and Demba Ba.

Mourinho recently claimed that he 'had no strikers' and the Portuguese coach was thought to be lining up a move for Monaco's Colombian international Radamel Falcao in the summer transfer window.

However, with the South American having only moved to France for around £50m last summer, Van Persie would represent a cheaper option. More importantly, Van Persie is a proven goalscorer in the Premier League.

The striker, who won his first league title last season despite a 10-year stay in the Premier League, was left to apologise to Moyes and his team-mates after criticising them in the recent 2-0 defeat against Olympiakos, per Mirror's David Anderson and Alan Nixon.

Remy de la Mauviniere/Associated Press

More recently, he started in Netherlands' 2-0 defeat in France and managed just two shots despite playing the entire match at Stade de France, per WhoScored.

Moyes may look at Javier Hernandez's knee injury during Mexico's goalless draw with Nigeria, per Daily Mail's John Drayton, as reason to keep the Dutchman, with just Wayne Rooney and Danny Welbeck as the club's current first-team strikers.

Sky Sports tweeted that the striker still awaits the length of his lay-off:

A lack of depth up front will worry Moyes, regardless of his decision on whether to allow van Persie more time to adapt to his methods. But with European football still on the agenda for the former Everton boss, Europa League competition may be enough to lure a new striker to the club.

United, still one of football's elite sides, will not struggle to attract new personnel as many will see Moyes' first season as a transitional blip in the club's fortunes.

Moyes will also be looking to ensure his squad for next season consists of players that are willing to not only play for the shirt, but also play for him.

United legend Peter Schmeichel told of his belief that a number of United's stars simply haven't been pulling their weight since Sir Alex Ferguson's retirement, telling Sky Sports:

I think he needs to sign a few players - how many I don't know! But I think, equally important, he needs to offload a lot of players. There's a lot of players there I'm very disappointed with. To be a Manchester United player, that carries a responsibility. You fight, never give in, even on days when it's not happening for you, you still have to try. 

But I've seen, throughout the course of this season, some players who haven't done that and this disappoints me. I think he will have learned who he can trust and who he can't trust. And this summer, I think you'll see a lot of players leave the club.

Judging by his turgid season and recent outbursts, one of those players looks to be van Persie. 

But who could Moyes bring in to arrest his side's decline and turn the fans around?

SEVILLE, SPAIN - OCTOBER 03: Mattias Ginter of SC Freiburg looks on during the UEFA Europa League group H match between Sevilla FC and SC Freiburg at Estadio Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan on October 3, 2013 in Seville, Spain.  (Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Gett
Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images

Well, how about Sporting's highly rated 19-year-old striker Carlos Mane, who has been made Moyes' top summer transfer target, according to Manchester Evening News' David Lynch.

A move for a young and hungry striker could be just the right antidote as the Red Devils' boss looks to put his own stamp on the United squad.

With a long-term plan in mind, too, and with moves for Mattias Ginter, per Daily Star's Gary Jones and Santiago Arias, per Metro's Danny Griffiths, Moyes is set to add a fresh, young look to his side's starting XI.

By clearing out the old guard, many of whom will still harbor lingering feelings for their former manager, it could add a vital spark to the club and present fans with a new set of heroes to adorn themselves to.

As for van Persie, though, it looks as though his stay at United could be cut short as Moyes looks to breathe new life into the club.

But the striker won't be short of suitors, and with a number of top European sides lurking, a switch from Manchester could be a welcome move for all parties.