Search icon


07th Feb 2017

WATCH: Robin van Persie well and truly destroys friendship with former Arsenal teammate

The opposite of classy

Ben Kiely

Robin van Persie was both the hero and the villain of Sunday’s Istanbul derby.

The former Arsenal and Manchester United striker scored the only goal in Fenerbahce’s 1-0 win over Besiktas in the Turkish Cup. However, just about everything else he did in the match has received a negative reaction.

Firstly, there was his involvement in an off-the-ball incident that resulted in Dusko Tosic being handed his marching orders.

While competing for a ball, van Persie appeared to foul Tosic and grab him by the head, but the Besiktas player was handed a red card for his reaction while Van Persie while van Persie remained on the pitch after falling to the ground as if he had been shot.

The incident infuriated Tosic’s wife Jelena Karleusa. The Serbian singer’s tweet reading “R. van Persie is one stupid motherfucker. Brake (sic) a leg asshole!,” had gained some serious traction online before it was deleted.

She later revealed that it was removed at the request of her husband, while getting in one more shot at ‘dirty’ van Persie.

That incident would have been enough controversy in one game for one player, but not RVP. for him, this game could be forever labelled the ‘friendship-ender’.

Arsenal fans will be forgiven for not recalling Oguzhan Ozyakup. The Dutch/Turkish midfielder came through the Arsenal academy, but he moved over to Besiktas in 2012 after failing to break into the first team squad. He has remained at the Turkish club ever since and was wearing the captain’s armband against Fenerbahce.

He developed quite the bond with van Persie while at Arsenal, but you wouldn’t be able to tell that on Sunday.

The bickering continued throughout the game, but it was van Persie’s celebration after scoring the winner that really symbolised the death of the relationship.

While jogging back to the halfway line, van Persie caught Ozyakup in his peripheral vision and immediately made a bee-line towards him. He sprinted towards his former teammate and slid on his knees right in front of him with his arms outstretched, all the while maintaining eye contact.

That’s not really how friends treat each other, is it?

After the final whistle, Ozyakup all but confirmed that he was no longer friends with RVP. Although he opted not to mention the striker by name, it was pretty obvious who he was talking about.

“I have a lot to say about the incidents on the field, but I won’t say them.”

“Just one thing… I was very good friends with a certain player on the field. That changed today. Sometimes you see the real face of a footballer on the field.”

That bridge has been burned to a cinder.

WATCH: Liverpool BOTTLED the title race 🤬 | Who will win the Premier League?