Van Persie, who has scored more goals so far this season than he did in his first six seasons with Arsenal is obviously in fantastic form, and has been the main reason for his sides recent run of positive results. He broke Arsenal's club record for the amount of goals scored in a calendar year with an incredible 35, one away from Alan Shearer's Premier League record of 36.
With 21 goals in 26 games this season, Gervinho looks up to the 28 year-old Dutchman and enjoys playing with him. There has been talk of van Persie being sold due to his current contract running out in 2013 and negotiations on an extension are not materializing, but Arsenal's summer signing Gervinho is hopeful his striker partner stays, citing the brilliant influence the captain has on the side:
“I don't want the sale of Robin van Persie. Arsenal is a team that needs good footballers and leaders on the field. Robin is a player who pushes companions to work harder and give more effort during matches. He is a dream to play with."
"Van Persie is the captain and the boss in the group, without doubt. I saw that from my first day at the club. For me, when opponents see Robin on the other side, it is a huge psychological blow. I am always happy playing with him."As mentioned, Gervinho is away on international duty for the African Cup of Nations which begins on 21st January and runs until12th February. He will be, along with Marouanne Chamakh, away for a crucial period in Arsenal's season, and for that, the former Lille striker apologizes to his club team-mates but emphasized his commitment to his country, saying:
“I am sorry I can't help my [Arsenal] team-mates but the Ivory Coast needs my collaboration,” he stated. “My country is very important and our challenge is to reach the final.”Arsenal haven't got a bad replacement, with the club legend, Thierry Henry returning to the club which adores him, to help them out of a slight predicament with attacking options thin on the ground. His first appearance since leaving for Barcelona about 5 years ago saw him score the winner in Arsenal's FA Cup tie with Leeds United, and Wenger will be hoping of more of the same throughout Henry's two month loan with the club.