Arsenal are confident of Robin van Persie playing out the final season of his contract, despite the captain turning down a new deal.
Holland international Van Persie issued a carefully worded statement on his official website on Wednesday revealing he would not be penning a new deal with the Gunners.
The 28-year-old netted 37 goals in all competitions as Arsenal eventually secured third place, and manager Arsene Wenger recently declared the club must retain their talisman "at all costs".
However, despite meeting with Wenger and chief executive Ivan Gazidis at the end of last season and the signings of German striker Lukas Podolski as well as France forward Olivier Giroud, Van Persie remains unconvinced he can fulfil his ambitions with the club he joined as raw talent from Feyenoord in May 2004.
Van Persie will turn 29 in August, and the next contract he agrees could well be his last at the highest level.
Both Serie A winners Juventus and Barclays Premier League champions Manchester City are said to be ready to test Arsenal's resolve with a £20million-plus bid.
However, the Gunners - who last summer saw both Cesc Fabregas and Samir Nasri sold - could also look to hold Van Persie to the terms of his deal.
A brief statement on the club's official website read: "We have to respect Robin's decision not to renew his contract.
"Robin has one year to run on his current contract and we are confident that he will fulfil his commitments to the club.
"We are planning with ambition and confidence for next season with Arsenal's best interests in mind."
Arsenal are set to tour Asia at the end of the month, and will also play a game in Nigeria.
Whether or not their captain will now be part of the travelling squad remains to be seen.
Van Persie, though, made it perfectly clear disagreements over the direction of the club means he does not want any part of Arsenal's long-term future.
In an open letter to fans on his website, www.robinvanpersie.com, he wrote: "I've thought long and hard about it, but I have decided not to extend my contract.
"I have kept quiet all this time out of respect and loyalty for the club and as agreed with Mr Gazidis and Mr Wenger, but since there is so much speculation in the media, I think it is fair for you guys (fans) to know what's really going on at the moment.
"As announced earlier this year I had a meeting with the boss and Mr Gazidis after the season. This was a meeting about the club's future strategy and their policy.
"Out of my huge respect for Mr Wenger, the players and the fans I don't want to go into any details, but unfortunately in this meeting it has again become clear to me that we in many aspects disagree on the way Arsenal should move forward."
Van Persie added: "As soon as Mr Gazidis is back from his two-week holiday in America further meetings will follow and I will update you if and when there are more developments."
The Dutchman maintained he would always "love" Arsenal, where he had "become a man", but insisted a fresh start was needed to fulfil his own ambitions.
"Financial terms or a contract have not been discussed, since that is not my priority at all," said Van Persie, who would be offered huge wages in the region of £200,000 per week at City.
"I personally have had a great season but my goal has been to win trophies with the team and to bring the club back to its glory days."
Former Arsenal winger Paul Merson believes Van Persie has in effect made his position untenable.
"He has burnt his bridges. If he comes back and they don't sell him the fans are going to slaughter him," said Merson.
Ray Parlour - who won the double twice under Wenger in 1998 and 2002 - feels Arsenal must look to quickly put the saga to bed.
"Van Persie knew three or four months ago that he wasn't going to stay," said Parlour.
"That's football these days. People move on quickly. Arsenal have to accept it and move on."
what do you think?
He just wants to win trophys! and most intelligent arsenal fans out there know the team at the minute is not good enough and has not been good enough for the last 5 years. Investment in the team with quality players not young players is what is needed. This season coming will again be a empty one - as for rvp good luck to you - you have been fabulous - all arsenal can do is get top dollar for him - dont let him go on a free.
Heard he going to villa. Smart choice
Robin, lets hope your new club whoever it may be is as loyal to you as Arsenal have been in the past. Remember the seasons of injuries that have been endured. A lesser club would have off loaded you long ago
stating the obvious, why u think they bought giroud and podolski????
Hmmm £8m seems a good deal now doesnt it
Jason Chippie Ferris
Not really considering city are going to offer 20 million!
Not any more they wont, knowing they can just wait until January and get him for nothing!!
we must sell him and get a replacement.
Litz Carl Dahab
Thank you RVP. You can leave in a good spirit and good luck. Hope you can join a better club than Arsenal. Mind you not all are successful after moving. Gunners have to move on.
The players over the last few years that have used the opportunity of silverware as an excuse for leaving have really annoyed me. If these players had stepped up a bit in finals and semi finals maybe they'd already have they're precious medals. That said RvP did all he could last season to drag us over the line so I'll consider him one of the greats regardless.
One good season in 8 he was always injured never ever played more than 15 games a season if I can remember rightly but if city want to give him 200k to sit on the bench with all the strikers there got its up them they want invest some of that 200k in getting him his own treatment room as well as a doctor and a extra physio there gunna need it believe
Hope rvp goes aboard let the biding war begin.
Just finishing inside the top 6 this season for Arsenal then. Great stuff
Looks like another drawn out transfer that will no doubt hamper arsenal's pre season. Look what happened last year and how they started. Better to cash in before it's to late.
RVP should show more loyalty to the Arsenal, like his family, who have been saying he should stay. How many seasons did he miss a large piece of due to injury, (one in particular he picked up playing for Holland, not the Arsenal) & the club stood by him. He then has one uninterrupted season & proved that the club was right to stand by him. Well now is the time for him to reciprocate, not run away. If, as he says it is not for the money, then here's a challenge; Pay any increase in salary, over & above your existing Arsenal terms, (including signing on fee), to a Children's charity.
Please sell him, we do not need greedy footballers,
1 good season he has had. get him out before he gets injured again.
Dzeko is better than RVP, hope mancity don't sign this(RVP) flop player.... Flop for 7season's @ Arrsenal, Flop @ Euro, only played 1 good season for Arsenal & in the last year of his contract, not worth more than £6m....