Come and join us, Robin! Toure urges Van Persie to help Man City win Champions League
10:37 GMT, 6 July 2012
Manchester City defender Kolo Toure believes former Arsenal team-mate Robin van Persie would boost their chances of winning the Champions League if he opted for a move to the Etihad Stadium.
City had been linked with the Holland international even before he announced on Wednesday he would not be extending his contract, which has a year to run, with the Gunners.
Join the team: Toure (fourth left) has urged Van Persie to move north and play for City
Having played with him at Arsenal, Toure is well aware of what Van Persie can offer a side and would welcome him at City.
'Robin is a top player. I've played with him, I know him and he's a great man,' the centre-back told the Manchester Evening News.
'At City we have great players and the club does what it wants in transfers. But for me, if Robin comes it's great because I know what he can do.
'You have to build your squad every year to do better; to win the Champions League is very difficult as we have seen.'
Barcelona and AC Milan are considering joining the race to sign Van Persie alongside City and United who both want Arsenal’s talisman, while it is no secret that Juventus have him at the top of their wish list.
Gunned down: Van Persie has signalled his intention to leave, but Arsenal may hold him to his contract
Juve won the Serie A title last season for the first time since they were relegated following the Calciopoli scandal of 2006, and they want a marquee signing to spearhead their assault on Europe.
The Turin club are thought to be willing to offer Van Persie 180,000-a-week, and the 28-year-old is reportedly keen for a challenge outside the Premier League – where he has been playing since 2004.
Van Persie is keen to have his exit finalised by the time the club’s Asia tour kicks off on July 24. It is understood that he would rather not be included in the squad that flies to Malaysia as it would delay his pending move.
Champions challenge: Toure wants to see the Dutchman line-up alongside the likes of Tevez next season
But manager Arsene Wenger is unlikely to take a lenient view on him missing the trip.
Wenger has not given up hope of persuading Van Persie to change his mind and is planning a heart-to-heart meeting with the striker when he reports for pre-season training in around 10 days.
But there is a feeling at the Emirates Stadium that Van Persie’s position is untenable after he admitted he does not agree with the club's direction.
Man of the moment: Van Persie was the Players' Player of the Year