Van Persie announces decision to retire at end of season

Joe Williams

Former Manchester United and Arsenal striker Robin Van Persie has announced his intention to retire at the end of the current season.

The former Netherlands international is currently playing for Feyenoord, where he made his senior debut aged 17.

At 35, Van Persie thinks he is ready to call time on his career after admitting he “lost the fun” before returning to the Netherlands from a spell in Turkey.

“When I have to stop? That is probably at the end of this season,” Van Persie told Dutch publication AD.

“I will be 36 years old and will have been a professional for 18 years. From the age of five, I’ve only been involved in football.

“I also do not believe that my return to Feyenoord has only been successful if we win the title.

“How is it successful? This is actually it, if you look at the whole picture. I had lost the fun. That’s not how I wanted to end, without pleasure. The fun has returned at Feyenoord.

“I want to win as a football player and the cup win was nice, but that is not the measurement between whether it is successful or not.

“I wanted to give something back, share my experiences. I am trying to help my fellow players.

“I see it as broader than just winning a title or not. That is the goal, that is what the club also say, but whether or not we win a title is not decisive for me on whether my return is successful or not.”

Van Persie is currently 12th on the list of all-time leading goalscorers in the Premier League with 144, while he won the title with United and the FA Cup with the Gunners.