Barcelona board of directors spokesman Toni Freixa has distanced the Catalan club from reports that Pep Guardiola is preparing a summer move for Robin van Persie.
There has been much speculation about RvP’s future in North London this week after he was spotted at the hotel where Barcelona were staying for their Champions League game against Chelsea.
Some have gone as far as suggesting that our captain was meeting Barca representatives to discuss a move in the summer, which is of course something that he would do in the reception of a hotel that was full to the brim of sports journalists.
In the captains article in the Arsenal matchday programme RvP explained the reason why he was at the hotel. This has now been confirmed by Frexia (in The Sports Review), who is also insistant that they will not be making a move for the Dutchman “for now”.
“My very good friend Ibrahim Afellay plays for Barcelona. This was an opportunity for me to go and visit a close friend, show him my support and catch up.
“Unfortunately, this had to be at the hotel, because he was not permitted to leave it. I was wearing my Arsenal tracksuit and we sat down by the reception to have a chat and some food – everyone could see us and there was nothing to hide.
“I can’t imagine anyone conducting transfer negotiations in these circumstances!”
“For Barça, any good player is of interest – and Van Persie is a great player. But [we have] no intention of signing him for now.
“He came to our hotel in London because he is Dutch and so is Ibrahim Afellay. They had a coffee together. He didn’t come to see us and there was no conversation.”
Robin will discuss his future at Arsenal with Arsène Wenger at the end of the season. Wenger wants definitive news on his contact before he joins up with the Dutch squad ahead of the Euro’s as he only has one year left on his current deal. The chances are that he will sign a contract extension. He seems to be happy in London and the team (hopefully) will finish 3rd and qualify for the group stages of the Champions League next season. With a few extra signings, we can also push for the Premier League title. However, there is always the possibility that there is some underlying problem that we don’t know about and Robin will try and force his way out of the club this summer… It is going to be a very crucial few weeks.