you to pick up different knowledge of the game, which can only help you. If the manager needs me to play in any position I’ll always do it.
You’ve got a couple of significant milestones coming up – 400 games and 200 goals. Are they important to you?
It’s great to have played so many games for this club at such a young age and it would be nice to get to that 200 goals mark. It would be an achievement I’d be proud of. Hopefully I can get to it between now and end of the season.
Do you see yourself as a senior statesman in the side? You’re someone the young players always talk about looking up to…
[Smiles] You speak to the younger players as much as you can and try to pass on the knowledge you’ve picked up over the years that you feel can help them. That’s what all the players I’ve played with have done with me, and you want to do the same because some of the younger lads don’t know everything about the game and what challenges they’re going to face. So you want to help them out, and I’m sure when those younger players are a bit older they’ll be doing the same thing for the lads coming through under them.
How would you sum up Robin van Persie’s contribution this season?
He’s been brilliant for us and has scored a lot of goals. He fitted in straight away and is fantastic to play with – he holds the ball up well, has great movement and makes great runs. Everyone was delighted when he signed as we knew he could bring a lot to the team and he’s proved that.
What’s he like in the dressing room?
He’s fitted in really well. This club has always been brilliant at making new players feel very welcome very quickly whenever they sign, and it was the same with Robin. He’s an outgoing person who gets on with everyone.