The former Netherlands international scored over a century of goals for the Gunners during his eight years in north London but infamously defected to Old Trafford in the summer of 2012.
Van Persie had grown tired of seeing many of his former teammates depart and enjoy success elsewhere, without seeing Arsenal reinvest the money they earned from the sales of Samir Nasri and Cesc Fabregas in high calibre replacements.
Under Sir Alex Ferguson’s guidance, Van Persie’s goals helped fire United to the Premier League title in his first season, but his form declined following the legendary Scotsman’s sudden departure.
Neither David Moyes or Louis van Gaal were able to help Van Persie hit the heights he did while Ferguson was at the helm, and he was eventually sold to Fenerbahce at the end of his compatriot’s first season in charge.
In his new book ‘Arsene Wenger, My Life in Red and White’, Arsenal’s former manager revealed Van Persie had contacted him to discuss the possibility of a return to the Emirates Stadium but the Frenchman felt any comeback would be ‘impossible’ to facilitate.
He wrote: ‘In 2012, he announced his intention not to extend his contract. All the big clubs were courting him. I sold him to Manchester United.
‘The supporters were angry with me for this but we could not match the offer. I managed to negotiate his departure for £24million, which was a huge amount at the time for a player with a year left on his contract. I had only the interest of the club in mind.
‘Van Persie had a fantastic first six months at Old Trafford: he put the team on track for the Premiership title and made it even more difficult for us. But after three years of the four that he signed for, he was injured and Ferguson (sic) sold him to the Turkish club Fenerbahce.
‘He called me because he wanted to come back, but it was impossible: he was at the end of his career and we were investing in young players.’