Van Persie: Arsenal switch was best thing that could have happened to me

Robin van Persie has been opening up on the switch to England and Arsenal which catapulted his career.

Robin van Persie may not be the most popular man in North London, but he remains grateful to former club Arsenal for taking a chance on him.

In fact he believes switching clubs from Feyenoord to join the Gunners almost 10 years ago was the best thing which could have happened to him.

In an interview with, the Dutch international captain said:

"Coming to England was the best thing that could have happened to me because I was taking myself out of my comfort zone, out of my nice warm city where I had my family and my friends, and everything was in place.

"Suddenly 'bang', you are in a different country, you are lonely, and [you have to] deal with it. It made me tough, it made me harder and made me more focused on achieving all my goals. It made me realise that I had the biggest influence on my career, and no one else."

The transfer and time at Arsenal may have eventually made him into a man, but he famously turned back to the 'little boy inside him', a quote he made when describing the reasoning for wanting to join Manchester United in August 2012.

While he won the league the following season, the two clubs are on differing trajectories now - but Van Persie still believes Manchester United can win the Champions League this season.

""It would mean the world to me. Of course it's a trophy many players don't win; [you win it] once, if you're very lucky. You have a couple of players who've won it more than once but it’s a very special trophy everyone wants to win every year.

"Only one team can win it, and it's very hard. It seems to get harder every year to win it, because the teams are getting better and better. So it's always hard if you want something everyone wants."

image: © Ronnie Macdonald

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