What does van Persie’s injury really mean for Arsenal?


Some good news today with the revelation that Robin van Persie’s ankle injury will only keep him out 4-6 weeks and not the 2-3 months that I suggested yesterday. The statement comes from the man himself and it means the Dutchman, who only partially tore ligaments in his ankle, may well make it back to provide us with a very welcome Christmas present.

It will be interesting to witness the impact of van Persie’s injury on the team over the next month or so.

On one hand it could be suggested he will be badly missed: there’s no denying that he has been superb so far this season, making the central forward position his own and hitting the back of the net with increasing regularity. But on the other we have an extremely classy player who will be dying to prove himself in Eduardo and a system that relies less on one player to get the goals and more on the collective functioning of the front five to create chances. So all things considered, I think we’ll be just fine.

Aside from Eduardo who will undoubtedly feature prominently in van Persie’s absence, there is a decent window of opportunity for Nicklas Bendtner to ask more questions of the manager when he returns a couple of weeks earlier than the Dutchman. There is a strong chance that the manager will shift Eduardo wide once Bendtner returns to the side and given his recent proclamations about wanting to be the best striker in the Premier League within five seasons, it will certainly be an opportunity to impress.

Another player who I would hope to see step up in van Persie’s absence is Andrey Arshavin. As far as experienced players go he’s just about top of the pile when it comes to attackers and this is just the sort of moment for a player of his undoubted quality to take a potentially awkward situation by the scruff of the neck. Arshavin has always been a big game player and with Bendtner and van Persie both unavailable for the match against Chelsea on the 29th we will need a quality performance out of the Russian.

Anyway aside from van Persie’s injury there’s not too much to talk about. The second legs of the European World Cup playoffs are taking place on Wednesday night (let’s hope Arshavin and the Frenchies come back alive and victorious) while Egypt play against Algeria in a one-off game to see who will make it to South Africa. I’ve written about just how spectacular an event that will be on my Football Nomad blog so check it out if you’re into that sort of thing.

That’s it for today. Have a lovely start to the week.

Have your say on van Persie’s injury or World Cup stuff by leaving a comment.



  1. its a pity its coming at this time but I guess he can do with the rest and then come back with a bang in Dec/jan just the rite time to have him back….A big opportunity for Arsh & Edwardo to impress even more… Arsenal is not short of quality strikers

  2. van P will be back asap. Meanwhile, I hear that a russian has been killing people,eating some and selling rest to a kebab shop. Can you find out if any of the victims were named Donna?
    Bring back real football!

  3. I see two options here , we are a long way from January so we have to deal with what weve got. Arshavin in the center or maybe even Diaby (out injured right now). Ramsey should take the spot beside Songh . Rvp is so much more than a striker .. he creates chances up field.. for the rest of the team Diaby could be an option as we get a bit of a targetman as well then his passing has been a bit dodgy but he certainly has the skill to hold up the ball but I beleive its time for Andrei to shine now. And if Eduardo is given a run in the team we could se some major improvement in his form and physique. Some people seem to forget how serious his injury was .. and he’s basically been crocked since his return to the team. He is back from a career threatning injury and also needs time to settle in our team and the PL But still some people excpect much more from him

  4. Greatness is seldom achieved in the absence of physical endeavour.

    From the first breath until the body fails, man is faced with challenges, which hinder his desire to realise his aim. Throughout our academic or professional careers, there are numerous hindrances and difficulties that we tackle with effort and determination to achieve the finest qualifications and promotions. However, if we fail to realise the greatness of the end result, the inevitable outcome is failure. Understanding the greatness is the essence of motivation and action…

  5. Well folks at the end of the day… we can only trust God now that RVP is injured and we can only hope he inspires good Wenger.

    For those about who shout BUY, I would like to ask: how are you going to keep all of them happy on the bench as only 3 players can play in our current system. We still have 2 full internationals ready (if they don’t get injured next week that is) and Walcott and Vela (also 2 full internationals when fit) coming back real soon now. Bendtner and RVP are also 2 full internationals so that makes that our 6 attackers are all full internationals.

    For some bizarre reason we have now the situation where 4 of our 6 first team attackers are injured at the same time. Must say that this is a very extreme situation and how would other clubs deal if they got hit by 4 forwards out at the same time. In a very short time we should recover Walcott and Vela and with Eduardo and Arshavin also available we then have 4 international players.

    Let’s try to look at the other top 4 clubs from last season. How would they cope with a situation like ours.

    Madchester United: they have Rooney, Owen, Berbatov, and then we could add Valencia and Nani but they are more wingers then strikers. Oh yes I forgot Wellbeck. So let’s suppose the first 4 fall out at the same moment… they could put Nani and Wellbeck up front. I would suggest SAF to buy.

    Let’s stay up north and go to Liverpool. They have Torres, Kuyt, Voronin, Ngog, and ….. can anyone please tell me cause when I look at their site a only see midfielders for the rest that could play in attack. So this would mean that Liverpool just had no real attackers at their disposal in case they got hit by the same amount of injuries like we do. I would suggest Benitez to buy even more.

    Coming back to London we look at Chelsea. They have Drogba, Anelka, Kalou all full internationals and then there is still Sturridge. So if 4 attackers would get hurt at the same time… Chelsea would have… no replacement who are pure strikers. I would suggest Ancelotti to buy, buy and buy.

    So one can see that the current situation is a situation that very rare appears but as always we are the one to suffer. But at the other end we are the best equipped compared with our other rivals.

    In fact we have in our midfield players who can play up front and have done in the past mostly on the wings like Diaby, Nasri, Rosicky and even Cesc , can and have played there.

    So those who say : buy, buy, buy are just shouters who do not have any eye for the very special circumstances we suffer for the moment. NO team has the depth to survive 4 injured attackers at the same time. In fact I never heard of a similar situation by any other football club. We shall see how Wenger puts his players on the field the next weeks and see how we cope with it on the field.

    Missing Robin is a major blow because he was on fire and playing and scoring great but the players we still have are all full internationals and have proven in the past that they can play there and deliver. So let’s get behind our team and the players and give them the trust that Wenger has in them.

    I must admit I was down when I heard the news but at the other end we now can see how strong Eduardo has come back and the way he scored for Croatia was a promising start.

  6. IMO, the injury to RVP is a serious blow to our title aspirations because has been very critical to our goal-scoring. The stats show that not only is he our second leading goal-scorer but most importantly second in assists. While it may seem we have sufficient forwards in reserve, i.e. Eduardo, Arshavin, Vela, Walcott, and Bendtner, apart from the majority having some recent injury problem the main point is they lack the quality which made us such a free-scoring team. As you point out Tony, apart from Eduardo, they are essentially wide players and don’t pose the same kind of dual threat as RVP. Throw Eboue in the mix and you are talking about a midfielder cum defender who is not a goal-scorer. With the ever present threat of injuries, the forwards look insufficient for a campaign in the PL, CL and FA cup. I deliberately omitted Rosicky and Nasri because I see them as midfielders who can go forward especially from wide areas. Arsene, I am sure, will adapt, but I anticipate that he will be more conservative; you mentioned resorting to a 4-4-2. The immediate casualty is goal-scoring: forget about breaking the 100 goal barrier for instance.

    Let’s keep our fingers crossed that RVP will recover soon. If not, like any team aspiring for greatness, we will just have to do without him.

  7. I have just been out for a walk in the pouring rain, trying to calm my feelings a little.

    I don’t agree with the buy-buy policy, because there is no way to keep the players happy when we don’t have injuries. We buy a terrific centre forward (if there is one for sale) and then what happens,… Van Persie comes back and you can’t play all of them. So the squad gets unhappy again. We’re back to Adebayor II.

    But, try this idea…

    4-3-3 shocked everyone – remember Everton on day 1. They had no idea this was going to hit them. Not the slightest notion.

    So, maybe there is a PLAN Z? I have always said I never saw 4-3-3 on the cards – but at that first game against Barnet thought: what the fuck is Rosicky doing playing centre forward?

    Plan Z hasn’t been needed yet – but just as I was totally taken by surprise on the Everton game, even having watched some extraordinary changes of position prior to that, maybe there is plan Z.

    Theo as a centre forward in the line up

    Arshavin, Theo, Eduardo…

    is anyone going to say that there is a more frightening forward line than that?

  8. You forgetting someone who scores goals for fun…

    CARLOS VELA!!!!! He has to get a chance to show what he can do!!! I think He, Dudu and Arsh could create a terrific front 3, granted they all short but the touch, creativity and skill will be awesome…

  9. Vela is unproven and from what i have seen of him in the prem is that he cant hack the physical side of it –

    wenger needs to toughen him up

  10. Be honest, are you surprised about RVP’s injury?

    I really really feel for Robin van Persie. The geezer is in the form of his life, has been injury-free for a long time and then BAM! This happens.

    A torn fucking ankle ligament.

    Of course teams will always suffer losing players to long-term injuries but it seems to me that Arsenal suffer them more than most. Especially in recent years. Has some gypsy put a curse on us? Have we pissed off the footballing gods?

    I suppose we have to just get on with it and not feel sorry for ourselves but it is hugely frustrating when you see how influential he has been recently and the type of form van Persie is in.

    Lets be honest here, it is a big blow to Arsenal but we have to believe that whoever steps in as the main striker is more than capable of doing the job. I believe that whoever comes in, be it Eduardo, Vela or maybe even Arshavin, can thrive there.

    Eduardo or Vela have proved in the past that they can finish for fun and at a club like ours, where chances are always created, either will really relish the chance to put the ball in the back of the net. Maybe even more so than RVP has recently?

    So while van Persie’s injury is a negative perhaps a positive may evolve from the situation. Eduardo was bought by Wenger as a striker. Now maybe his chance to play there and regularly score goals.

    He has been used mainly from the left this season and while he does a good job there we could do with him in the box where he can get on the end of things.

  11. What it means for Arsenal?

    We will still score goals, we will still win games, van Persie will be well rested, Eduardo will regain sharpness, Walcott will inject pace, we will still win the league.

  12. rest RVP the entire 6 weeks so he’s not injured again the second he’s back. let eduardo do his thing up front. hopefully there’s some magic between walcott and eduardo. vela is not strong enough yet. DIABY AS A STRIKER????? really hope you’re not serious. no need for a transfer for a striker, maybe some cover for song in the middle while he’s in africa and in case of injury.

    i think we’ll hurt a little but still win matches.

  13. Van’s injury is undoubtedly a big blow, we shall miss him in the team but I believe we still have the team to hold a bigger challenge. Van Had a good attitude so we want to see the same from the other players. Lets not loose hop bse of him. We wish you a quick recovery Van!

  14. We will miss Van Persie’s expertise with the dead ball. Noone else can hold a candle to him in this area.
    Wenger should renew interest immediately in Chamakh and we need a tall strong defender who can dead with deadball defensive situations.


  15. This reminds me of a comment I made around this time in 2007. And I will say it again.


    He is the best suited player to lead the attack in our new formation. One of the reason Arsene probably preffered RVP is because RVP struggles to play wide, but Eduardo can, so to get the best of the group, RVP had to be the man. One more reason I alluded to after the arival of Arshavin, of getting rid of Adebayor, because he could not be used anywhere else.

    Arshavin-Eduardo-Rosicky front 3 and preferably any pairing of Song/Denilson/Nasri with Cesc is very lethal to me. I feel bad for Theo and Ramsay, but they will have to bid their time this season.

  16. @TayGoon – I agree almost completely. When he is healthy, Walcott will be a huge asset off the bench. His speed will create massive problems against tired legs when he’s introduced around the 65th minute of games and Ramsey will continue to give Cesc some needed rest in the occasional game. Maybe he’ll develop midfield partnership with Song and Cesc.

    The injury hurts, especially considering the form RVP was in, but Arsenal will prevail.

  17. Haha- too abstract of a connection? I think it works lol. Wednesdays game is all I can think about

  18. Im from Egypt originally but born and raised in the states. Thats why I am going nuts. You cant imagine the tension I went through on Saturday. And the entire country is going absolutely nuts. I am confident that if we qualify on Wednesday- absolutely no work will get done until after the world cup. Especially with the African Cup this year too. AAAAA its insanity and I LOVE it

  19. Wel replacing the V.P is not a problem, we all know how the ability of Eduardo, his statistics are self-explanatory via goals, we only hope that no further injuries hit us.

    Arshavin is another player who has for long wanted to play in the central role.

    My boy Vela also has an oppotunity and so is Bendtner. we just need to win the next two games to maintain our confidence.

  20. Let’s hope Arsene puts his faith in Vela. It’s time.

    Just like when young Cesc had to step up to the plate with simultaneous injuries to Gilberto, Edu and Vieira back in the day.

    Vela, Eduardo, Nasri for Sunderland……

  21. HA HA HA.LOL. Arsenal are SHIT. They are going to LOSE. LOSERS. CRAP TEAM MATE, NEVER SUPPORT THEM, ARENAL ARE SHIT! Van Persie Injured LOL. Cant stop Laughing. HA HA HA HA

  22. ehem ehem.. i think arsenal current form is good enuff for them to win games esp Fabregas. but one have to remember that games are piling up towards end of december. so this is the decisive moment

  23. With Nasri and Rosicky available, I don’t see anything keeping Wenger from using a 4-4-2 in tight situations with those two out wide and Arsha/Eduardo up top.

    I just realized how nice it is to have the 4-4-2 as a defensive fall-back instead of having to watch Adebayor sitting up top alone away in Europe in that dreadful 4-5-1 Wenger likes to pull out of his hat in big games.

  24. Who will replace, Gibbs, who is replacing Clichy? I reckon he will put Silvestre in there he played well in the kiddies cup so hopefully he can play well on Saturday. If Wenger doesn’t play him then there is absolutely no point in keeping him on the books.

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