Arsenal insist van Persie is not for sale

Arsenal have warned off any would-be buyers of captain Robin van Persie, insisting that the Netherlands international’s expiring contract does not mean the Gunners are interested in selling the striker, the Daily Telegraph has reported.

Van Persie’s deal runs out in 2013, at which point he would be free to leave the Emirates Stadium for nothing. Talks on a new contract will be held this summer with the Telegraph reporting they will begin at the end of the season but there is only a short window between Arsenal’s last game and the beginning of Euro 2012 preparations. The talks may extend past the end of the tournament, which concludes in late June. The newspaper notes that Arsenal’s predicament at the end of the season – whether or not they are in the Champions League places – will determine much about van Persie’s future.

This week the newly-crowned champions of Italy’s Serie A, Juventus, admitted their interest in signing van Persie, listing the forward as one of three strikers they are chasing. The remaining pair where Liverpool’s Luis Suarez and Gonzalo Higuain of Real Madrid. Arsenal have however confirmed to the Telegraph that they would rather lose van Persie for free next summer than sell him on the cheap in the next few months.

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