FOOTBALL NEWS

"Robin has been incredible since he joined. And he's such a nice lad off the field as well so it's great to have him here."
- Phil Jones

"You can see in every game he plays that he's such a threat and he puts teams on the back foot."
- Chris Smalling

17/12/2012 08:30, Report by Gemma Thompson

Reds hail Robin reliant

Chris Smalling and Phil Jones have heaped praise on Robin van Persie after he netted his 15th goal of the season in the 3-1 win over Sunderland.

The Dutchman fired the opener against the Black Cats with a smart finish on 16 minutes and laid on the third for Wayne Rooney after brilliantly skipping free of two Sunderland defenders.

Van Persie has been a revelation since he arrived at Old Trafford in the summer and his team-mates say he is a joy to play alongside.

"Robin has been incredible since he joined. He's a fantastic player," Jones told MUTV.

"He went straight into the firing line after he arrived and has scored a lot of goals. And he's such a nice lad off the field as well, so it's great to have him here."

Smalling echoed those sentiments in an interview with MUTV: "He's really making the difference.

"He only came here in the summer and didn't have much of a pre-season so it was a case of just getting straight into the games, but you can see in every match he plays that he's such a threat and he puts teams on the back foot. His understanding with Wayne [Rooney] is growing all the time."

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