Last season, in a mark of respect to his old employers, the Dutchman did not acknowledge his two strikes during separate victories over the Gunners at Old Trafford and the Emirates Stadium, citing his on-going admiration for Arsene Wenger and the club’s supporters as reason.
However, at the weekend, the Netherlands international could not help but celebrate his superb 27th minute header at the Theatre of Dreams. And Cole, who scored 121 goals in 275 appearances for United, and also played for Arsenal, insists van Persie was within his rights to enjoy his moment of glory.
Speaking exclusively to ManUtd.com during the re-launch of United’s partnership with STC, the club’s official Triple Play Partner, Cole said: “I think that is down to each individual, whether you celebrate your goal or not. Robin is at a different football club now, he plays for Manchester United.
“Last season, he was very respectful when he scored against Arsenal. But this season, celebrate your goals I say, he is a centre forward and he wants to score goals. What else should we expect?”
Van Persie’s goal was assisted by his strike partner Wayne Rooney, who was later crowned Man of the Match by fans on ManUtd.com and @ManUtd, adding further evidence to the theory that their alliance could become one of the best in English and European football.
Having excelled in a red shirt alongside Dwight Yorke, Cole is an expert in the field of successful partnerships and the United Ambassador is impressed by the van Persie/Rooney axis. But as he says, both players will ultimately be judged by their trophy haul.