herald

Tuesday 6 December 2016

Premier League clubs on alert as Robin van Persie reveals unhappiness at Fenerbahce after being dropped

Former Manchester United and Arsenal striker Robin van Persie hits out after losing his starting place

Robin van Persie greets supporters during his contract-signing ceremony with Turkish club Fenerbahce
Robin van Persie greets supporters during his contract-signing ceremony with Turkish club Fenerbahce

Is Robin van Persie's career swansong in Turkish football in danger of turning sour?

It has not taken long for the former Manchester United and Arsenal player to express unhappiness at his treatment at Fenerbahce, after he criticised coach Vitor Pereira for starting him on the bench against Bursaspor last weekend.

Van Persie - who only joined Fener in the summer after losing his first team place at United - was brought on as a 77th-minute substitute and promptly scored the winner for his new club.

 But that did not improve his mood, with the Dutch striker telling Lig TV: “To be honest, I am not very happy at this moment.

“I was not happy that I started on the bench. I am fully fit, physically very well and able to play for 90 minutes.

“The only right answer I could give was with what I did: helping the team to get the victory.”

 Van Persie, who is paid £3.5million a year at Fenerbahce, has only played the full 90 minutes once since arriving in Turkey, and his goal against Bursaspor was just his second for the club.

But Pereira insists he does not regret keeping his high-profile new signing on the sidelines, with Fenerbahce having taken 13 points from their opening five games this season, a record that has put them three points clear at the top of the table.

He said: “I would play more players if we were allowed to play 22 or 25 players.

“The players can like or not like what I do, but I must take decisions. I am happy with Van Persie’s performance after being brought on to the pitch.

“It would be bad if he wasn’t unhappy about being a substitute. This proves that he wants to play.”

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