Daily Archives: April 23, 2012
If you take a close peek at the illustration above you’ll see Arsenal’s talisman holding the club’s “first trophy” in seven years, the 2012 PFA Player of the Year award. As expected, esteemed footballers, media vulture reps and fans like graced the gala event.
It’s worth noting that you can find a picture of the lead actor of the hit movie, Legends of the Fall, Gareth Bale, in the second box below. Thanks to Kanyeezy for uploading the content in my Arsenal BlackBerry group, Team Goonerdaily.
Robin van Persie began his youth career in Exclesior before making a move to the club that gave him his football education, Feyernoord. In his three-year stint in Feyernoord’s first team from 2001 to 2004, van Persie won the UEFA Cup with the Dutch outfit but he had a lot of irreconcilable differences with the manager and present Dutch coach, Bert van Marwijk.
He won the best young talent of the EreDivisie award in 2002 and had a tumultuous time in the tail end of his Feyernoord career. After making 59 appearances and scoring 15 league goals in three years at the club, van Persie parted ways with Feyernoord and joined Arsenal as a long-term replacement for the great Dennis Bergkamp.
In Arsenal, Robin van Persie made his debut against Manchester United in the Community Shield of 2004 and has been a loyal stalwart to the club ever since. Van Persie has had the pleasure of playing beside excellent forwards like Thierry Henry and Dennis Bergkamp but the early seasons of his Arsenal career has been blighted by injuries.
With the exit of his predecessors, van Persie has stepped up the plate to become the most important player in Arsenal Football Club and he has currently amassed a total of 129 goals in just 273 appearances for the club with 93 of those goals scored in the Premier League.
On the international scene, van Persie has represented the Netherlands on four different levels and he’s currently an essential piece of the Oranje’s jigsaw puzzle. It’s really funny to know that its the same Bert van Marwijk that’s the present manager of the Netherlands but they’ve put their differences aside for the good of the game.
The Flying Dutchman has also been recognized for his football exploits with the EreDivisie Best Young Talent award (2002), Rotterdam Sportsman of the Year (2006), Euro 2008 Bronze Boot and Arsenal Player of the Season (2009).
However, his outstanding goalscoring run as well as his magnificent team efforts have earned him a place in Premier League history as 39th PFA Player of the Year, despite facing stiff competition from Manchester United’s goalscoring Ogre, Shrek.
Van Persie’s 34 goals this season certainly played a major role in winning what John Terry considers as “the ultimate accolade to be voted for by your fellow professionals whom you play against week-in and week-out“.
In a somewhat chronological order, I’m going to review each goal as we relive those moments that made the Arsenal faithful create the hit single, “He scores when he wants”
Goal ONE against Udinese at Frulli
Arsenal’s black dreadlocked Harry Potter with the big forehead received the ball from a deflected Tomas Rosicky shot. he casted a few Expecto Patronum spells and the Udinese players watched again as he waltzed past them. His final ball found Robin van Persie that did the rest with a neat left-footed finish.
Goal TWO against Manchester United at Old Trafford
Arsenal looked very demoralized but there was still time for the Gunners to add to their count. Carl Jenkinson was free on the right and he sent a cross into Manchester United’s box. Phil Jones headed it away but the header came back to Jenkinson who nodded it straight to the path of RVP who smashed the roof with his effort.
Goal THREE against Borussia Dortmund at Signal Iduna Park
With halftime looming around the corner, the deadlock was broken after Sven Bender lost the ball in midfield to Robin van Persie. The ball got to Theo Walcott then he sent a sumptuous through ball to van Persie. Arsenal’s captain picked his spot and finished aplomb.
Goal FOUR and FIVE against Bolton at the Emirates
Arsenal went into a flyer at the start of the second half thanks to some decisive attacking play. Gervinho got the ball in midfield and made a run but he was tackled by some bloke but as Aaron Ramsey received the ball, Mr. Clattenburg waved play-on instead of stopping play for an infringement. Ramsey moved with the ball before setting up RVP on the edge of the box. He dallied a bit before creating a chance for himself to beat Jaaskelainen on his near post.
Ramsey sent another through ball to Walcott on the right hand side and the winger had acres of space to exploit. He raised his head up and found van Persie free so he sent a well weighted ball to Arsenal’s captain who made the slightest of touches to score Arsenal’s second goal. That was also his 100th for the club after six years of magnificent service.
Goal SIX and SEVEN against Sunderland at the Emirates
The start Arsenal made to the game rocked the tentacles of the Kraken and Arsenal history was just eight seconds away from being rewritten. Shortly after kickoff, Rosicky fed Gervinho who made a tricky run before passing the ball to Robin van Persie. The intelligent forward let the ball move across him before side-footing it home with his fabled chocolate leg. Arsenal was one up after 28 seconds; Gilberto Silva still holds the record for the fastest Arsenal goal in that 4-0 win over PSV in just 20 seconds and RVP wasn’t far off.
When it all seemed as if all hope was lost and Arsenal was heading for another disappointing draw, Benayoun passed the ball to RVP but the striker was impeded by the rugged Wes Brown. Like Seb Larsson in the first half, van Persie took his time and let out a few bursts of air before curling the ball over the wall to Mignolet’s net.
Goal EIGHT and NINE against Stoke City at the Emirates
The Arsenal crowd awaited the 200th goal at the Emirates and it was only befitting that such a goal would be scored by the man of the moment, Robin van Persie. Gervinho was involved in the attacking play again and he did well to evade the threat of Wilson before teeing van Persie in the near post where the intelligent striker had a quick snap shot that beat Begovic in his near post.
With the game easing off, Gervinho popped up again on the left to send another assist for van Persie whose effort couldn’t be stopped despite Begovic’s hand on the shot.
Goal 10, 11 and 12 against Chelsea in Stamford Bridge
Arsenal pegged the hosts back when Alex Song and Aaron Ramsey combined well before giving Gervinho a through ball. The Ivorian was one-on-one with Petr Cech but he unselfishly fed Robin van Persie who wasted no time in dispatching the ball to an unguarded net.
Florent Malouda was crowded by an Arsenal midfield so he decided to give a back pass to John Terry who decided to slip in the best possible time so the ball fell gracefully to the wrongest person on Earth in such a situation, Robin van Persie. RVP ran at Petr Cech before attempting a “Box and X” Playstation move on the goalie to place the ball to the empty net.
Mata smashed the ball goalwards but Koscielny put his body on fire to block the shot. Rosicky won the ball before feeding Song who gave Arteta. The Spaniard moved with the ball before providing a ball to the red-hot van Persie who rifled the ball past the hapless Cech.
Goal 13 against West Brom at the Emirates
Aaron Ramsey started a delightful move that saw Theo Walcott go clear of the defender marking him. Ben Foster made a good save from Walcott’s effort but the ball sailed aimlessly to the wrong player in the planet as Robin van Persie scored his easiest goal in 2011 with a simple right-footed finish from less than six yards out.
Goal 14 and 15 against Norwich at Carrow Road
Arsenal’s breakthrough came when Walcott used his pace to evade his marker before drilling the ball into the heart of the defense to an awaiting predator called Robin van Persie that finished off with consummate ease.
Van Persie scored what proved to be the winner when he chipped the ball over the goalie after receiving a carefully-weighted pass from Alex Song.
Goal 16 and 17 against Borussia Dortmund at the Emirates
Alex Song invoked the spirit of Lionel Messi and singlehandedly took on five or more defenders showing quick feet before sending a cross that was headed home by van Persie
Late on, the Dutchman showed amazing awareness as he was the first player to get one the end of Vermaelen’s flick-on to make it 2-0 from point blank range.
Goal 18 against Wigan Athletic at the DW Stadium
Van Persie put the icing on a well-baked cake when he converted Walcott’s pass and he was quick to show his appreciation to a player that has contributed immensely to his goal scoring exploits in 2011. Walcott had a clear-cut chance to finish it himself but he chose to give his captain.
Goal 19 against Everton at the Emirates
When the chips were down and it seemed like it was going to be one of those days for Arsenal, Laurent Koscielny picked the ball further up the pitch before feeding Alex Song. The Cameroonian gem looked up to see his captain before lofting a carefully-weighted ball that was executed magnificently by Robin van Persie.
It was a goal that epitomized everything van Persie stood for in 2011; technique, precision and class.
Goal 20 against Aston Villa at Villa Park
Arsenal took the lead when Theo Walcott used his blistering pace to evade Clark but the defender got a handful of the winger’s jersey leaving the ref no choice but to point to the spot.
There was no guessing who the penalty taker would be as Robin van Persie stepped up to slam the spot kick home.
Goal 21 against Queens Park Rangers at the Emirates
Shaun Wright-Phillips was having a good time down the right but he gifted Arsenal a goal when he handed a pass to the much criticized Andrey Arshavin that did well to tee up van Persie early enough for the Flying Dutchman to slot the ball home.
Goal 22 against Swansea at the Liberty Stadium
Arsenal went off to a flyer when Arshavin teed up the red-hot Robin van Persie that feinted a shot at first before lashing it past Vorm in goal with just four minutes gone.
Goal 23 against Manchester United at the Emirates
Koscielny showed great determination to halt Rafael’s charge goalwards before launching a counter attack with a pinpoint pass to Rosicky. The Czech captain fed the Ox who in turn gave a cushioned pass to van Persie. Van Persie hit it first time and his drilled effort beat Lindegaard to level the contest for the Gunners.
Goal 24 and 25 against Aston Villa at the Emirates
Ramsey atoned for an earlier miss when he has hacked down by Dunne in the box. Up stepped van the Man to send Given the wrong way.
Arsenal’s 3rd goal and match clincher arrived when Laurent Koscielny made one of his slalom runs forward after a brilliant one-two with Alex Song. He was scythed down in the box by Darren Bent leaving the man with the whistle no choice. Van Persie stepped up again to smash in goal number 25 for the season.
Goal 26, 27 and 28 against Blackburn at the Emirates
Arsenal got off to a flyer when the predator in the box van Persie got on the end of a Theo Walcott pass.
Arsenal restored the lead when Alex Song’s amazing through ball found Walcott that fed van Persie again for another easy tap in. His third was in similar fashion.
Goal 29 against Tottenham Hotspurs at the Emirates
Benoit Assou-Ekoto sent a panicky clearance that arrived at van Persie’s feet. Surrounded by Spuds, Arsenal’s talisman still managed to find some space before curling the ball sweetly past Friedel.
Goals 30 and 31 against Liverpool at Anfield
Arsenal got their equalizer when Bacary Sagna floated a cross that was headed home by Robin van Persie.
When it seemed like a draw was going to be the likeliest outcome, Songinho attempted a delicate chip that was finished in astonishing fashion by a truly magnificent player, Robin van Persie.
Goal 32 against AC Milan at the Emirates
The Ox made another jinking run that caused more problems for the AC Milan defense and he compounded their misery by winning a penalty. Robin van Persie stepped up to send Abbiati the wrong way.
Goal 33 against Newcastle at the Emirates
Arsenal pegged Newcastle back when van Persie showed off his technical prowess to get an equalizer in timely fashion. Sagna and Rosicky were brilliant on the right hand side before Theo Walcott’s drilled cross arrived at van Persie’s feet. Arsenal’s captain guided the ball past Williamson before smashing his attempt past Tim Krul.
Goal 34 against Wolves at Molineux
Arsenal got off to a flyer when a Robin van Persie incisive through ball put Theo Walcott through but the winger was denied a clear-cut goalscoring chance by Sebastien Bassong. According to the FIFA Rule Book, the ref was left with only one decision to make, thereby giving Bassong a chance for an early bath.
Arsenal’s captain stepped up to score one of the cheekiest penalties you’ll ever see. Thierry Henry showed such class against Leeds United in the yesteryear.
I hope you’ve enjoyed the review.
With three games left to play in the season, van Persie has to be on his toes to get some more goals because Manchester United’s Shrek is breathing down his neck for the Golden Boot award.
However, the winner of the Golden Bench award has also been decided.
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