Robin van Persie: a coffee for the road, or might he even stay?
'I love this club and that's no secret' - Arsenal's star striker hints that he could remain at the Emirate
COULD a cup of coffee be the key to Arsenal's future happiness? Star striker Robin van Persie, the subject of endless speculation about his intentions, has let it be known he'll sit down with the club in May and discuss his future over a coffee.
In a conversation with Dutch journal Voetbal International, the goal-grabbing Gunner declared his love for the club, saying: "I have been at Arsenal for eight years and I'm proud. At the end of the season I will sit down with the coach [Arsene Wenger] and the president [Stan Kroenke]. Then we will make a cup of coffee… I am a true Gooner. I love this club and that's no secret."
Van Persie didn't specify which of the trio would be making the coffee though if it's Wenger let's hope he makes it stronger than his side's defence. So far this season the Arsenal back four have been to blame for most of the club's misfortunes while Van Persie has scored a stunning 29 goals in 35 appearances.
Rumours have grown in recent weeks that the 28-year-old might move away from the Emirates in search of silverware but Van Persie's comments to Voetbal International suggest otherwise.
Meanwhile there are conflicting reports concerning Cologne striker Lukas Podolski. According to Talksport, Schalke have entered the race to sign the 26-year-old German international and they are confident they can win the prize. Talksport claims that Schalke's main sponsor Gazprom are "willing to help fund the move" which would allow them to meet Cologne's asking price of £15m.
However, the Daily Mail claims Podolski "has agreed terms to move to the Emirates" and is "happy" at the prospect of playing for the Gunners.
Less happy are Cologne, who are demanding £15m from Arsenal and are so far unimpressed with the north London's initial offer of £8m though they are aware of Wenger's reputation for being as tight as Francis Coquelin's hamstring. Nonetheless, the Mail says Cologne will try and hold out for their £15m though they "sense Podolski will be spearheading Arsenal's attack next season".
In other news, Harry Redknapp has done to Adam Smith what the Metropolitan Police should have done to the nag it lent to Rebekah Brooks and recalled him from loan. The Spurs boss farmed out Smith to Leeds United last month but following Kyle Walker's ankle injury against Arsenal on Sunday Redknapp needs the 20-year-old Smith back at the Lane.
A statement on Leeds United's official website read: "Tottenham defender Adam Smith has been recalled from his loan spell at Elland Road in order to provide cover at right-back for the Premier League side's first-team."
Elsewhere ESPN reports that Borussia Monchengladbach midfielder Havard Nordtveit is being tracked by Liverpool after an impressive season so far in the Bundesliga. The 21-year-old Norwegian has been a tower of strength for Monchengladbach, helping them reach third spot in the German league and his performances have apparently caught the eye of Liverpool scouts. Nordtveit came up through the Arsenal youth academy before joining Monchengladbach on a three-and-a-half year deal in 2010.