Too cool for boos: Sir Alex Ferguson hails Robin Van Persie’s composure as penalty silences Arsenal abuse

By Alex Bysouth

Robin van Persie silenced the Emirates boo-boys on his return to former club Arsenal by notching a spot-kick equaliser and winning the plaudits of Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson.

The Dutchman equalised with a first half penalty after Arsenal had upheld champions’ tradition with a pre-game guard of honour.

Despite excelling during his time at the Emirates, van Persie entertained a trophyless Arsenal career and United boss Ferguson was delighted with the striker’s composure on his return.

“He kept his nerve, that was important,” Ferguson told MUTV. “It was a difficult time for him. The chanting from the fans doesn’t help, but he kept his cool.”

Van Persie is back in goal-scoring form for the champions and, despite missing out on the PFA Player of the Year award, is a prize asset in the eyes of his teammates.

“He’s got guts. He’s a great player and a great lad,” added Phil Jones.

“He knew coming back to his former club what he was going to expect today. He converted the penalty really well and I thought he played well.”

And defender Patrice Evra is convinced the 29-year-old proved to doubting Gunners fans exactly why he made the decision to depart north London for Old Trafford last summer.

“People forget what he achieved for Arsenal,” said Evra. “But he showed them that he hasn’t made the wrong choice.

“It was a long time that he didn’t win the league at Arsenal. He has come to Manchester United and won the league.

“He did a good job for Arsenal and I was really disappointed for him. I think he felt it as well.

“To take that penalty he showed what a world-class, top player he is. He kept his nerves down to score that penalty and I am happy for him.”

Image courtesy of Sky Sports, via YouTube, with thanks.

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