Back

Robin van Persie leaves Premier League: Dutch poacher’s seven best strikes

Manchester United (6/1 with Coral to win the Premier League) have announced the sale of veteran sharpshooter Robin van Persie to Turkish giants Fenerbahce for a fee rumoured to be around the £4.7m mark.

The former Red Devil and ex-Arsenal star will most likely never prowl the Premier League again and, despite the animosity caused by his trading North London for Manchester, Van Persie has left plenty of fond memories for all.

Here, Coral writers celebrate the dangerous Dutchman’s sweetest volleys and most sensational strikes. Agree or disagree? Have your say on the goals we missed out on Twitter.

Manchester United v Aston Villa (2013)
Van Persie was at his most prolific for Man Utd in his first season under Sir Alex Ferguson and never better than in this encounter with Aston Villa. The Clockwork Orange attacker’s cool hat-trick sealed the Red Devils’ 20th top tier title, but it is Van Persie’s classy volley everyone remembers best from the three hits.

See the striker latch on to Wayne Rooney’s defence-splitting pass:

Arsenal v Charlton Athletic (Premier League, 2006)
An athletic volley that even Zlatan Ibrahimovic would be proud of, Van Persie appeared to channel his inner martial arts master with this effort, as he sprung at pace to smash in the winner against Charlton.

Is this better than his volley against Villa?

Swansea City v Manchester United (Premier League, 2013)
Predatory Van Persie bagged a brace against the Swans (11/8 for a top 10 finish) on this occasion, but his scissor-kick inside the penalty area was the pick of the bunch, as the Dutchman caught a delightfully chipped Ryan Giggs lofted pass perfectly.

Take a gander at the goal:

Arsenal v Tottenham (Premier League, 2012)
Derby goals are always special and Van Persie was certainly the scourge of Spurs, scoring six from 18 career games against them, and no more so than in Arsenal’s famous 5-2 victory over their North London neighbours.

While captaining the capital club, the Gunners goal machine memorably brought down a loose ball and turned the Tottenham defence inside-out with tricky footwork before lashing home a lethal strike.

Watch the guileful goal here:

Manchester City v Manchester United (Premier League, 2013)
Another cross-city rivalry, another heroic moment for the hitman, as he marked his Manchester derby debut with a last minute winner to end City’s unbeaten home record.

Although his curling free-kick caught a deflection, it was still a cracking, and crucial, effort:

Arsenal v Barcelona (Champions League, 2011)
As of yet Van Persie has not claimed a Champions League medal, but he impressed the continent with this strike from an almost-impossible angle, lashing home assuredly across the face of Barca’s goal from a wide position. Sadly for the Gunners, their 2-1 last-16 first leg Champions League win was not enough as they were beaten 4-3 on aggregate.

Van Persie on target against the Catalans:

Netherlands v Spain (2014 World Cup)
While we attempted to focus on Van Persie’s impact at club level with this list, one international notch in particular cried out for inclusion and we could not resist.

This was no ordinary goal, on the biggest stage against the then World Champions, as Van Persie, never more in his peak than at that moment, lived up to the phrase ‘flying Dutchman’ with ease. The striker arced gracefully in the air to head home Daley Blind’s perfectly pinged cross-field pass. See the fine finish below.