Speaking in a press conference following Manchester City’s 4-0 win over Limerick (No, me neither…), Roberto Mancini has all but confirmed that the Blues are out of the race to sign Robin van Persie, leading to increasing speculation that our star striker will join Manchester United.
The main reason that City will not sign van Persie this summer is because they don’t have any room in the team. Eden Dzeko is looking increasingly likely to stay at Eastlands, meaning that Mancini has 4 fantastic strikers (Tevez, Aguero, Balotelli, Dzeko) to juggle around. As the Italian points out, sitting on the bench is pretty boring and van Persie would have a lot of competition at City. A player of Robin’s quality and in such fantastic form needs to be playing pretty much every game, not sitting on the bench in Manchester.
When asked about interest from AC Milan and Juventus in Dzeko and about the van Persie situation, Mancini replied:
“I’m pleased, as this means we have good players, but it’s pretty unlikely he [Dzeko] will leave.
“He is right to say it’s no fun being on the bench, but when you join a big club then competition is normal.
“Van Persie? No, I don’t think he will come here.”
Now that City have taken a step back, the only option of RvP appears to be Manchester United. Juventus have already distanced themselves from our captain, and the suggestion in the British Media is that he will sign for United at some point this week for a fee of around £20 million. Sir Alex apparently chose to stay in Manchester rather than travel with United for their pre-season friendly in Norway because he wanted to finalize some transfers, although this could equally apply to the £30 million signing of Lucas Moura.
Juve are out, City are out, but United just doesn’t sit quite right for me. I am leaning increasingly towards thinking that RvP will still be an Arsenal player next season, but I couldn’t tell you why. Maybe I am just being slightly naïve/optimistic.