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Van Persie happy with own style
Published : 12 Nov 2009 15:21:14
Van Persie - currently preparing for Holland's friendly against world champions Italy in Pescara - has been in superb form for the Gunners, netting seven Premier League goals and providing as many assists to help Arsene Wenger's men climb to second in the table. Indeed, ahead of the Champions League clash against AZ Alkmaar at Emirates Stadium, coach Ronald Koeman hailed the 26-year-old as the best player in the current Oranje squad. Wenger, meanwhile, believes van Persie is leading the way in the English game with his own unique style, combining the link-up play of Dennis Bergkamp with that of the more traditional target man so often utilised by Thierry Henry. Holland boss Bert van Marwijk looks set to deploy the Arsenal striker in a more central role for his country, similar to that in which he now operates in the Gunners front three. Van Persie - signed by Wenger as a raw talent from Feyenoord during May 2004 - believes his gameplan certainly offers something different. "I don't see myself as a true out-and-out striker. Guys likes Fernando Torres and Didier Drogba, they are real killers," van Persie told Dutch magazine Voetbal International. "I try to bring my own dimension to the forward position. "I feel I play between a target striker and a shadow striker. I am a combination of both and that's just fine. "In the league I have now contributed seven assists and I am just as proud of these as the seven goals I have scored. "I find it crucial to be effective in both spheres for the team." Van Persie added: "The coach (Wenger) is particularly keen that I add something to the tactical play of the team, both offensively and creatively, that I use and combine with the players around me. "It is my main intention to help others play. "I am also free to make myself more dangerous. It took a while before I had found the balance." Van Persie has certainly made the most of his attacking responsibilities following the summer departure of Emmanuel Adebayor to Manchester City, the Togo striker have often been Arsenal's main attacking outlet in previous seasons. The Dutchman revealed how a recent chat with Wenger helped him find a new dimension to his game. "The weeks before, I was constantly taking defensive actions, hunting and pressurising," van Persie said. "In the same games I missed some good chances. "When I listed them, I came to the conclusion that, through all that work and bustle, I had missed the primary focus of my role. "The coach thought the same thing. He said I had my moments to make better choices. "In recent weeks, I think it is all better balanced." Holland certainly have the talent to opt for a similar formation to the Gunners, with Ruud van Nistelrooy and more recently Klaas-Jan Huntelaar having been used at the front of the attack. Van Persie, though, would gladly step into the role if asked. "I would find it a fun challenge," he said. "I am still developing in that position but I know I can play there if the (Holland) coach needs me." Arsenal, whose win at Wolves extended an unbeaten run to 13 games in all competitions, have nearly all of their first-team squad away during the international break. Denmark striker Nicklas Bendtner, however, has undergone surgery on his groin injury, which is likely to keep him out until at least early December. England forward Theo Walcott is on the comeback trail and could return from a knee problem for the showdown against Premier League leaders Chelsea at the Emirates Stadium on November 29. Midfielder Denilson (back) should also be available by then but French defender Gael Clichy is likely to need some more time to recover from a stress fracture in his lower back.