It was the news we all wished we didn't have to hear that captain Robin Van Persie was choosing not to renew his Arsenal contract that currently has a year left to run. Although it's sad and people are rightfully angry and hateful towards Van Persie, what could we expect? Loyalties been dead in football for years and since 2004, we've just had to deal with the fact that unless you pay the most or win the most no-one wants to play for you anyway, just so happens that coincidentally the one's who pay the most win the most too.
It's sad, no doubt, another player who believes his bank balance is more important than loyalty to the coaches who have assisted in him in his development and therefore future endeavours and the fans who kept patience with him. Let's not forget, or at least Van Persie shouldn't that he wasn't always 'all that' and there were years where he spent most of them on the surgeons table and when he was in the 'workplace' he wasn't the best player in the world either.
However, why should we expect loyalty? Ever since 2006 the club's slowly declined from a team who lost a Champions League final to a team who for the most part of this season looked like they'd struggle to qualify and Van Persie had to witness the best years of his career almost ruined by some really inconsistent and incompetent players. I mean if I was playing in a foreign country and wasn't a die-hard fan I'd find it tough not to want to be playing for another club who win things, have better players and being a greedy bugger that I am, pay higher wages. For a start, Van Persie's Dutch, not saying disloyalty is a trait of the Dutch people just that he's not from Islington, he's not like Tony Adams who spent his whole career at Arsenal. It's easy to say well Dennis Bergkamp remained with Arsenal, but then Bergkamp for one couldn't leave England unless on a boat and by that time the transfer market would have closed and his journey would be wasted and also Arsenal just so happened to be one of the best clubs in England when Bergkamp was playing, his only other option was Manchester United and they were never interested anyway. Whereas now there's a whole host of clubs who are better than Arsenal and more fashionable too, sad but true. Van Persie didn't show loyalty to his home club Feyenoord when he moved as a kid to Arsenal so why should we expect him to suddenly be loyal to a club he isn't a fan of (even if he was pictured as a child in an Arsenal shirt)?
The fact of the matter is, most players are no longer loyal, players like Adams, Giggs and Scholes who spent their entire careers at one club will slowly become few and far between and most likely eventually extinct and as much as we'd love to believe Robin Van Persie is not like a Wayne Rooney who left boyhood club Everton for Manchester United and then held them at ransom for a new lucrative contract or he was going to leave, the fact is he's not and any wave of a five pound note or shiny medal (that coincidentally is only available to be waved due to the money that club has inherited) causes the player to forget all stuff he told the press in years gone by and move elsewhere, unless the club they are contracted to now try and compete with the money juggernauts and offer stupid amounts of money to keep that player and with Arsenal's finances, the already exploitive season ticket prices and the fact they're trying to pay off a heavy stadium debt would be almost suicidal, despite what people like Piers Morgan would try and tell them.
It's sad but it's nothing new, loyalty in football is dead, it's not dying it's dead, its funeral was years ago it's just we don't like to think the star of our team will leave us so we keep a level of delusion around to make us feel happy at night and keep us away from nightmares, just very unfortunate when it turns out we were wrong causing us to get angry. Oh well, Overmars, Anelka, Petit, Flamini, Fabregas, Nasri and others have all left us before they probably should have and the club goes on, still in the top three or four in the country, Van Persie is no different except the media portrayed him as some great God-like footballer despite the fact he's just a very talented footballer alongside players who like to pass the ball to him, just watch the three Holland games from Euro 2012 to see that when he doesn't get Walcott and Song's constant service he's quite anonymous and unused. Had Chamakh got a good run this season, the amount of chances we create he'd at least gotten half the goals Van Persie did and his confidence wouldn't be as low as it seems.