Dishonest! Robin van Persie blasts Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal but praises Arsene Wenger

Dutchman reveals he wasn't fighting “an honest battle” following his exit from Old Trafford

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The Independent Football

Former Manchester United striker Robin van Persie has spoken out against Louis van Gaal’s management following his departure from Old Trafford.

The Dutch international completed a £3.8m move to Turkish club Fenerbahce earlier this month after three years with the Red Devils, and has since revealed that while he was willing to stay to stake a claim for his place in the first team, he knew his United future was in jeopardy as early as April.

During a 1-0 defeat at Chelsea five weeks from the end of last season, the United boss chose to leave Van Persie on the bench, opting instead for Angel Di Maria and Adnan Januzaj as the visitors chased the game.

Speaking to the Sunday Times, Van Persie explained: “That was one of the first signals things weren't going in the right direction.

"I asked to play in the reserves, to get my minutes, but after was on the bench again. The atmosphere changed between me and Louis and people at the club saw it, but I was always professional.

“I was still thinking we could come back from holiday and start from scratch, but when I came back it wasn't an honest battle any more. Fighting to get back in the team wasn't given to me as an option.

"I didn't get angry or emotional. These things are part of football, part of life. You have to make the best out of any situation so I'm doing this by moving on.

“I know Louis as a national team coach and now I get to know him as a club coach. And there is a difference."

However, while Van Persie criticised the management style of his compatriot, he was quick to emphasise his appreciation for a former coach, Arsenal's Arsene Wenger, despite the acrimonious manner of his transfer from the Gunners to United in 2012.

“People think there was an argument between us. On the contrary we always had a lot of respect for each other. I'm still talking to Arsene regularly now. He is a world class coach and manager and above all, a classy man.

“If you're Arsenal captain and top scorer and move to United, fan will be upset. I wanted to win the Premier League. But I had a very special time at Arsenal. Some might want to erase me from their history but no one can change the facts. I did score 132 goals for Arsenal, I did play close to 300 games. One year as captain."

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