Arsene Wenger bets an ice cream that Robin van Persie will stay at Arsenal


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The Independent Football

Arsène Wenger has insisted there is no chance of Robin van Persie going to Juventus – and told an Italian journalist he would even buy him an ice cream if any deal went through.

The Arsenal captain has been targeted throughout Euro 2012 by the Italian champions, who dispatched Pavel Nedved to talk to the 28-year-old. They have also opened tentative negotiations with the Liverpool striker Luis Suarez and Borussia Dortmund's Robert Lewandowski.

However, Wenger, who is working as a commentator for French television, said a move to Turin would have little attraction for Van Persie.

"He will stay at Arsenal," Wenger told the Italian newspaper La Repubblica. "There is no reason why a top player, a big champion would want a move to Serie A – in terms of the prestige of the league, the level of play or financial considerations.

"If he moves there, I will buy you a caramello," Wenger concluded.

With one year remaining on his contract, Van Persie's future at club level remains in limbo. His father has said he will not consider another English club. However, talks with Arsenal's chief executive, Ivan Gazidis, reached no immediate conclusion and there have been no public declarations of interest by either Real Madrid or Barcelona.