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Where will Robin van Persie be playing next?

In a summer where Arsenal have dominated the transfer headlines, there is still a huge question mark over the head of star striker and captain Robin van Persie.

Arsene Wenger has appeased Arsenal fans with the high profile signatures of Lukas Podolski, Olivier Giroud and Santi Cazorla, but losing the Premier League’s top goal scorer of last season would still provide a massive blow to their silverware hopes going into 2012/13.

This has left many avid Gooners stuck between the dilemma of widespread optimism, seemingly to be followed by news of a crushing blow in their summer of upheaval.

Whereabouts unknown

Arsenal fan Tom Watt, the former EastEnders star turned presenter, actor and journalist, remains clueless as to what direction the van Persie transfer saga will travel in next, but remains upbeat for the 2012/13 season ahead.

“I haven’t got the faintest idea what will happen," he said. "If he’s gone tomorrow I wouldn’t be surprised.

“If he’s still here in January, if he’s available for selection for the first game of the season, if he stays an Arsenal player?

“None of those possibilities would surprise me really, so I haven’t got the faintest what’s going on.”

The Dutchman is currently in Germany with the Arsenal first team squad in preparation for Sunday’s friendly with FC Koln but back home in Manchester, Sir Alex Ferguson has most recently revealed: “We have made a bid and they (Arsenal) have been trying to negotiate with other clubs. We just have to persevere.”

With the potential United move having currently stalled, the future of the Arsenal captain is very much up in the air echoing the thoughts of Watt and us all, but the fact Manchester United missed out on Lucas Moura to Paris Saint-Germain yesterday, probably means they are more adamant than ever in clinching the high profile capture of van Persie.

Pre-campaign optimism

Despite the van Persie saga overshadowing a successful summer in the transfer market, Watt believes Arsenal fans can look on to the 2012/13 campaign with a substantial level of optimism.

Watt said: “Despite the van Persie situation, the first team squad is in better shape than it was a year ago by some distance.

“Although I do think there were two or three absolutely fantastic signings made at the last minute last year.

“I actually think Mertesacker was a very good signing and I thought he had a very good half season before he got injured.

“I do think the squad is in better shape but a lot will depend on who is fit and who is going to score goals.”

With a lot of these questions remaining unanswered, only time will tell in both the future of van Persie’s whereabouts and whether Arsenal can really push on for honours this term.

What’s for sure is that Arsene Wenger has assembled his squad much sooner than he did last season so a repeat of the freak 8-2 score line at Old Trafford last term should be avoided.

Kicking and Screening

Aside from cheering on his beloved Arsenal, Watt has been busy compiling some projects of his own with the world’s top international football film festival; Kicking and Screening returning for a second year to London’s Everyman Cinemas this September through to October.

Watt; a member of the K&S advisory board since the festival’s inception in 2009 is bringing together former pros such as Tony Adams to mark the 20th anniversary of the publication of the elusive Fever Pitch by Nick Hornby which will be shown at Screen on the Green in Islington.

The festival will also close with the world premiere of The Beautiful Game; directed by Victor Buhler and Julian Cautherley at Everyman, Maida Vale.

Watt has also just released a book; Football Shorts – a collection of short stories by stellar children’s writers such as Alan Davies, Terry Deary and Alan Sefton as well as modern professionals such as Vincent Kompany, Faye White and Tomas Rosicky which detail the fortunes of fictional side Shelby Town who go on all kinds of adventures in facing Manchester United and characters being selected to play for England and so forth.

Football Shorts is available for a RRP of £7.99 from all good bookstores.

If you would like to know any more about the upcoming Kicking and Screening festival, details can be found on the official website below.

Official website: www.kickingandscreening.com

By Taylor Williams - Follow me on Twitter @Taylor_Will1989 - Visit my blog - thetrickywinger.blogspot.com

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