Arsene Wenger pays glowing tribute to Robin van Persie following Turkey move

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has expressed his surprise at Robin van Persie’s decision to leave Manchester United for Fenerbahce, and paid the Dutchman a fine tribute by saying that he is one of the best players he ever managed.

The 31-year-old ended his 11-year stint in English football last week when he joined Turkish giants Fenerbahce for the knock down fee of just £4.7m (via the Daily Star) following a frustrating campaign at Old Trafford.

Louis van Gaal told the veteran hit man that he would not be featuring prominently in his plans for the upcoming campaign, thus ending his short but successful spell in the northwest.

However, Wenger, who controversially let van Persie leave for United in 2012 after having him for eight years, has paid a warm tribute to the man by hailing him as one of the finest players he has had under his charge.

“It is a very big surprise that Robin van Persie has been allowed to go to Turkey,” said Wenger.

“He is a huge loss to English football because he is still a great footballer.

“He was one of the best I ever managed, a man with an exceptional technique. I don’t know what happened or why he left Manchester United but I have to tell you that he is a great loss to the Premier League.”

Van Persie made a total of 277 appearances for the Gunners, scoring a total of 132 goals in the process and winning the FA Cup in 2005. He leaves Manchester United with 58 goals in 105 games with a Premier League title to show for his troubles.

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