van Persie Believes!

"There is ambition. I have spoken to both the boss and [chief executive] Ivan [Gazidis] about it... I trust him and my message to everyone is: be patient, trust the team and the people above."- Robin van Persie, trusting the Club that I no longer canvan Persie stalled on his contract for six months, believing that the Arsenal were unambitious and unable to challenge for trophies. He said there was no issue with the money; he was perfectly happy to resign provided there were indications that the Arsenal were on the way up. He wanted to win trophies, and he didn't want to wait until the kids had grown up.He kept that stance for months on end, until just a couple of days ago when he signed a new contract with the Arsenal. And now, van Persie's a born-again Arsene Knows Best believer, and he's preaching the good news to a crowd of sceptical gooners. And I'm wondering, what made him come around?From my point of view, I can't see much to get excited about. Yes, Song improved quite a bit over the last half of the season. Yes, Arshavin proved to be an inspired buy. And yes, Vermaelen was signed promptly, without the protracted ennui we've grown accustomed to. I agree that the noises coming from the Club are encouraging. But is that reason enough to put on our happy faces and wear our "I ? The Arsenal Board" T-shirts?I say no.We've been down this road before, you and I. And quite simply, I don't trust myself to believe in a Club that's let me down before. Fool me once, shame on you. But fool me several times with gritty away wins and improving youngsters and title challenges that crumble at the first sign of resistance, shame on me. To believe that this Club will change is to open up, to be vulnerable, and we all know what happens when that happens.I'd like a bit of van Persie's optimism, to be honest. There must be something overwhelming to have persuaded him to sign over the best years of his career to the Arsenal. I could use some of that. My own optimism is like a plastic bag - it puffs out when caught in an updraft, but in moments of depressed air, it's just a deflated little husk of a thing.I'm kind of sick of words, and promises, and pretty speeches from our players vowing to try harder. We've heard it all before, and it's hard to take it at face value when you know they've disappointed in the past. Belief doesn't exist in a vacuum, after all - you need something of substance to prop it up.That said, this is something that restores my faith in agents somewhat - Dennis Lachter, holding onto his contract with Arshavin and telling the world that it's legally binding. This, from the man who treats player contracts like a lover's sweet nothings, who has no scruples when it comes to other people's obligations:"He sent me a letter, absolutely. Listen, it's like entering a contract with Arsenal or anybody else; there are obligations. If you think that you can just cancel this formal relationship between two parties only because of a newborn baby it's…what can you say…well you can't do it. That's it. I'm his agent."He's a funny man, Dennis Lachter. And he's brilliant at what he does. If Arsenal hires him, then I'll start to believe again in our ambitions.

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