Robin van Persie set to leave Arsenal

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London, Jul 7: Gunners star Robin van Persie has revealed that he will not sign a contract extension at Arsenal and is willing to continue his football career away from London.

RVP, 28, whose current contract with the club ends in 12 months' time, held meetings to discuss his future at the club before Euro 2012, with talks postponed until the striker returned from his summer vacations.

Premier League's top-scorer last season has had time to think about the talks but said it did not turn out to be in his favour, rather headed in the future of the club, forcing him to turn down offers as he believes the club do not share his plans for the future.

"As announced earlier this year I had a meeting with the boss [Arsene Wenger] and Mr [Ivan] Gazidis after the season. This was a meeting about the club's future strategy and their policy. Financial terms or a contract have not been discussed, since that is not my priority at all," Van Persie was quoted as saying in ESPNsoccernet.

"I personally have had a great season but my goal has been to win trophies with the team and to bring the club back to its glory days. Out of my huge respect for Mr Wenger, the players and the fans I don't want to go into any details, but unfortunately in this meeting it has again become clear to me that we in many aspects disagree on the way Arsenal should move forward."

"I've thought long and hard about it, but I have decided not to extend my contract. You guys, the fans, have of course the right to disagree with my view and decision and I will always respect your opinions."

"I love the club and the fans, no matter what happens. I have grown up and became a man during my time with Arsenal. Everybody at the club and the fans have always supported me over the years and I have always given my all on and off the pitch."

"I am very proud of being part of this fantastic club for the last eight years. As soon as Mr Gazidis is back from his two-week holiday in America further meetings will follow and I will update you if and when there are more developments."

Arsenal later issued a statement on their official website stating, "We have to respect Robin's decision not to renew his contract. Robin has one year to run on his current contract and we are confident that he will fulfill his commitments to the club."

"We are planning with ambition and confidence for next season with Arsenal's best interests in mind."

Van Persie, who scored 37 goals in all competitions for the club, was named the PFA footballer of the year for his performances last season. But scored only 1 goal in three appearances at the Euro 2012 finals tournament.

Several clubs are willing to sign the Dutch star namely Manchester City, Juventus, Real Madrid and Barcelona who are ready to meet the price tag and the players wage demands.

Over the years Arsenal have lost many stars to rival clubs especially Manchester City. Players like Emmanuel Adebayor, Samir Nasri and Kolo Toure had joined City while former Arsenal captain Cesc Fabregas joined Barcelona.

However, Gunners have signed Lukas Podolski and Oliver Giroud to strengthen their attacking options and also try and convince van Persie about the club's plans. But Wenger and Gazidis will have to decide on whether to allow their star striker to leave for nothing next summer or cash in on him right away this summer.

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