Etihad Stadium boss keen on Emirates Stadium captain.
Manchester City are ready to return to Arsenal – the club whose manager, Arsène Wenger, has been subjected to more approaches from the Abu Dhabi owners than any other – with Robin van Persie a possible recruit next summer when the gap soon to be left by Carlos Tevez is eventually filled.
City appear to be in no hurry to prepare an immediate replacement for Tevez in the probable circumstances of his departure for a fee the club feel may dip to below £20m and it is impossible to make any firm predictions four months away from the next window.
But the idea of adding Van Persie to a side already including Samir Nasri and Kolo Touré – former Wenger employees – is one that intrigues Mancini. An approach for a player likely to cost the club £30m is unlikely to be made in the January transfer window but the prospect remains a dreadful one for Wenger, who could find himself in a repeat of this summer’s futile battle to retain Nasri.
This rumour may well have legs but would Robin Van Persie be likely to leave Arsenal for a Premier League side? It seems unlikely. Whilst Samir Nasri did indeed make that very same move the two players are worlds apart.
The Dutch striker has a lot to thank the Gunners for, the North London side has stuck by the former Feyenoord through his many injury problems and indeed the 28 year old appears to have a stronger connection with Arsene Wenger and Arsenal, hence his being named captain after Cesc Fabregas left for Barcelona.
That is not to say that Van Persie would not consider his future at Arsenal should they fail to end a six year silverware drought this season but perhaps a move abroad would be far more likely in the event the striker chooses to leave the Emirates Stadium.
Van Persie has been in great form over the past 18 months and one could see why Mancini would want the Arsenal man but it’s worth remembering that the Man City boss purchased Sergio Aguero to replace Carlos Tevez and the Italian was clearly expecting the Argentine to leave in the summer, hence signing his international team-mate from Atletico Madrid, so perhaps there is no dire need to bring in another striker, after all the Etihad Stadium side also has Mario Balotelli to call upon.
Wenger has set something of a precedent by allowing his players to be sold to rival Premier League sides, even though he specifically told Nasri originally that he could not move to City, and therefore some have deemed the club something of a soft touch and this season is fast becoming something of a make or break one for the French boss.