FOOTBALL NEWS

26/04/2013 11:38, Report by A Marshall & A Bostock
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Robin ready for return

Sir Alex Ferguson insists that Robin van Persie will not be fazed by a first return to the Emirates Stadium since trading Arsenal for United last summer.

The Barclays Premier League top scorer hit a hat-trick against Aston Villa to confirm his return to top form and will be a major threat to his former club on Sunday as they bid to maintain a top-four place.

However, a number of pundits have suggested that the Dutchman could be left out of the starting line-up for the clash in the capital as the home fans are guaranteeing him a hot reception for opting against signing a new contract in order to leave the Gunners.

"I'm not really bothered about that to be honest with you," stressed Sir Alex, when asked about any hostility from the crowd. "I don't think Robin should bother about it either.

"There was some booing of him when he played against Arsenal at Old Trafford and I think you probably expect a portion of the fans will do that. But that's the modern generation and modern society, I'm afraid."

Van Persie scored in the 2-1 win against Arsene Wenger's men in that first meeting with his former club and will be out to hit the net again this weekend. The Dutchman was clearly elated to clinch his first league title crown on Monday and this pleased his manager.

"I think it showed in his celebrations," added the boss. "Not just for the goals but at the end of the match, he was celebrating more than the others."

Meanwhile, Gunners chief Wenger has confirmed his players will form a guard of honour before the match for the newly-crowned champions.

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