Arsenal receive transfer backing from hero turned villain Van Persie as £38m deal lined up | Football | Sport

Arsenal have been presented with a glowing reference for transfer target Cody Gakpo by former striker Robin van Persie. The Gunners have been strongly linked with a move for the exciting PSV attacker, who starred against the North Londoners in the Europa League in midweek. 

Gakpo’s remarkable goal record has caught the attention of Europe’s top clubs. Arsenal joined Manchester United in showing an interest during the summer transfer window. But PSV remained clear that the 23-year-old would not be sold. 

Reports in the Netherlands, though, suggest that the Eredivisie giants could be forced into a sale in the near future to remain financially secure. Arsenal will be one of the clubs lining up to sign the Netherlands international, who already has 13 goals and 14 assists to his name this season.

Van Persie – who splits opinion with Arsenal fans following his controversial 2012 switch to Manchester United – has told Gunners fans what they can expect if they sign Gakpo. “He is a good player. He always finds a way in most games to have an influence in terms of making an assist or a goal,” the former forward, who is now a coach at Feyenoord, told BT Sport. 

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“He is 23 and is focusing on his career with us at club level and having a great World Cup. He wants to continue that. When the time comes, he will make decisions.”

It comes amid reports from De Telegraaf that PSV could need to sell Gakpo for a bargain £26m in either January or the summer, although separate reports say clubs could need to pay up to £38m. The Dutch side need to sanction a major sale soon to remain healthy. 

Man Utd opted against signing the PSV academy graduate in the summer, instead pursuing an £86m move for Brazilian ace Antony. Arsenal will surely be interested in rivalling the Red Devils.