Top 10 Little Known Facts About Robin van Persie



The Dutch striker Robin van Persia has always been a prolific goal scorer in club football over the years but has been a bit of a disappointment in the World Cups until the 2014 edition in which he announced his presence with a superb brace versus holders Spain. However, very little is known about this outstanding footballer who has scored plenty of outstanding goals over the last decade and this article present to you certain facts from his life about which you might be unaware.

10. His Learnt the Tricks of the Trade with Street Football

Learning to play football in the streets is something that you would normally associate with South American players since they are not usually coached at an early age; however Robin van Persie is an exception to that rule since unlike many of his European counterparts he honed his skills on the streets of his hometown Kralingen. However, the only thing that must be pointed out here is the fact that the streets of the town had plenty of concrete court like areas in which the young Robin practised his football skills and you would agree that the early years has had a major influence on his career.


9. He Drew Comparisons with Johan Cryuff at the Age of 14

If the Netherlands have ever had a footballing god of sorts then it is none other than Johan Cryuff, the man who led them to the final of the 1974 World   Cup and ushered in an era of football that has never been replicated in the beautiful game since. He is a player who is almost every budding Dutch footballer’s hero and in case of Robin van Persie, most football coaches in the Netherlands believed that he could be the successor to Cryuff in the long term. Comparisons with great players aren’t rare but comparisons with someone like Cryuff at the age of 14 are quite staggering.


8. He Is Not a Natural Striker

Robin van Persie is now considered one of the greatest strikers in the modern game by football fans as well as by experts who are aware of all the intricacies of the beautiful game and in this regard it needs to be pointed out that unlike many other star strikers, he did not actually start off his career as a striker. When van Persie was a youth player at Dutch club Feyenwood he made his name as a left winger, however when he joined Arsenal in the English Premier League, the manager Arsene Wenger recognised his potential as a strikers and went about turning him into a striker. That was a move that has certainly turned into a rousing success.


7. He Encountered Football Hooliganism Quite Early in his Career

Hooliganism in European football is a disease that does not seem to go away and the young van Persie had an encounter as a teenager that must have left him mentally scarred for quite some time. During a youth game between arch rivals Ajax and Feyenwood, football hooligans ran on to the pitch in a pitched battle among themselves and the young players had to be escorted off the pitch by armed personnel. You would agree that it is a sort of experience that no young footballer should be subjected to.


6. He is known To Have a Quick Temper

The Dutch striker is perhaps one of the coolest strikers in the world with the ball at his feet but you might be surprised to know that he is also known to have a quick temper that had threatened to cast a shadow on his career as a professional footballer. The only reason why Arsenal were able to acquire him at a bargain price of £2.5 million pounds was because of his regular run ins with the manager and the higher authorities at Feyenwood. However, the latest Dutch master has tempered his wilder side to some extent and you would hardly see him losing his head these days.


5. He Is Not a One Trick Pony

A sportsman might be better known by the sport he plays professionally but it is important to point out that they might as well be interested in other sports and as far as Robin van Persie is concerned there are certain games which he enjoys other than football. He unwinds by throwing darts in the gym, while on the other hand he is also a very good table tennis player and enjoys having a game or two with his teammates. However the game in which he really excels in other than football is in lawn tennis and in fact he even used to have a membership of one of the most exclusive tennis clubs in London so that he could play a few sets whenever he had the time.


4. His Parents are Artists

It is often said that artistic aptitude in the gene pool manifests itself in strange ways and as far as Robin van Persie is concerned, his parents’ professions might as well been one of the reasons why he is such a graceful footballer. His father Bob is into sculpting and in fact one of the collages that he made for former Dutch player Denis Bergkamp adorns the wall of the footballer’s living room. On the other hand, his mother is into painting and has a day job as a jewellery designer.


3. A Psychic Predicted that He Would be Rich and Famous

This is a really remarkable fact about the footballer since you would usually come across such occurrences in movies in which psychics predict fabulous things and they eventually come true. However, a psychic in van Persie’s hometown Rotterdam told his father that he would become a globally renowned individual and would earn ‘pots of money’ that would make him immensely rich. Considering the fact that he earns £250,000 a well from Manchester United makes it abundantly clear that both the predictions have proven to be true.


2. His Son Calls Him ‘Dad Arsenal’

Kids can come up with weird names for their parents; however the name that his son Shaqueel van Persie uses for his dad Robin is funny and sweet at the same time. When van Persie used to be the main man at Arsenal, his son used to call him ‘Dad Arsenal’ and that particular name has stuck to him till now. However the irony of the whole thing is that in 2012, the striker moved to arch rivals Manchester United following an acrimonious transfer wriggle and so whenever he is called ‘Dad Arsenal’ by his son it draws laughter from those who are around.


1. He Was Once Jailed For Alleged Rape

At number one is the shocking and forgotten episode from Robin van Persie’s life about which many people do not know. The alleged incident took place in the Netherlands and the woman alleged that the striker raped her in a hotel room while he was there on national duty. He was jailed in Rotterdam and had to spend 15 days in prison before he could be bailed out. This sordid episode took place in 2005 but a year later in 2006, the case was thrown out of court for lack of evidence and the striker was eventually acquitted.



So those were some of the facts from one of the modern greats of football that must have come across as a bit of a surprise for you. Hopefully you enjoyed it.


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