Rio Ferdinand hails former Manchester United team-mate Robin van Persie as one of the best ever as he leaves for Fenerbahce

Ferdinand took to Facebook to praise the Dutchman

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The Independent Online

Former Manchester United captain Rio Ferdinand has said that departed striker Robin van Persie will go down as one of the club's greatest ever strikers.

Van Perise, 31, flew to Turkey and was mobbed by Fenerbahce fans as he arrived in Turkey on Sunday night ahead of a move to the Istanbul club that is expected to cost around £5million.

The retired centre-back played two seasons with Van Persie at Old Trafford, who fired United to the title in Sir Alex Ferguson's final season in charge after a £24million move from Arsenal.

Van Persie scored 26 Premier League goals in 2012-13 as United won the title, but has struggled with injuries and form since, scoring just 22 goals in the last two Premier League seasons.

 

As I am posting this... it looks like my former team-mate Robin van Persie is joining Fenerbahçe.The moment Sir Alex...

Posted by Rio Ferdinand on Sunday, 12 July 2015

 

"He was actually a better player than I thought he was when he arrived at Manchester United - I had played against him many times vs Arsenal, so I knew he was good but not this good," Ferdinand wrote on Facebook.

 

 

"Maybe that was because he was up against me and Vida [Namanja Vidic] though!! On a serious note though, I think that was the general thought through the squad too.

"As a player he is so silky to watch, great touch, can hold the ball up & bring others into play, timings of his runs, skills & a dream of a left foot....oh and he can finish!"

Van Persie was meet by hundreds of cheering fans in Turkey and although a deal is not yet officially done, both player and club are confident a deal is done.

 

The Turkish giants announced on Thursday that they had entered into negotiations with United and the Dutch striker over a potential move and they are clearly confident that the deal is done.

The club also posted a number of quotes from the player, who said: "I cannot wait to meet the fans. I am coming to a fantastic and wonderful club. It is a great honour for me."

United have remained silent on the developments surrounding Van Persie's apparent departure since boss Louis van Gaal implied on Friday that talk of the deal was premature.

Asked whether he was looking for a another striker because Van Persie was leaving, Van Gaal said: "When you say that it is not all true.

"When we feel we can say he is gone you shall hear it from Manchester United. We don't have the feeling yet."

Van Persie scored 30 goals for United as they won the league in 2012-13 following his £24million move from Arsenal.

His impact since then, however, has been muted due to a series of niggling injuries, and he was limited to 10 goals in 29 appearances under compatriot Van Gaal last season.

Additional reporting from PA

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