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Manchester United to open Van Persie contract talks in January

“The truth is I’m very happy here at this club. I signed for four years and I’d be delighted to stay even longer,” says the Dutchman

MANCHESTER UNITED WILL open talks with Robin van Persie over a new contract in January, report.

The Red Devils typically offer rolling 12-month extensions to players in their early 30s but are prepared to make an exception for Van Persie by adding another two years to his current deal, which expires in the summer of 2016.

It is believed that the 31-year-old’s existing €319,000-a-week salary package will remain intact until 2016, but could decrease by as much as €127,000-a-week over the final two years as he assumes veteran status at Old Trafford.

United regard Van Persie as an asset that would still command plenty of interest and a significant fee in the transfer market, and are wary of allowing him to enter the final year of his current deal with no agreement on an extension.

The club are also mindful of the striker’s loyalty to Louis van Gaal, with no guarantees that the former Ajax and Barcelona boss will remain at Old Trafford for the coming years after an underwhelming start to the season.

Van Persie’s future became the subject of intense speculation during the brief and ill-fated tenure of David Moyes but he reiterated his commitment in March, telling United’s official matchday programme:

“The truth is I’m very happy here at this club. I signed for four years and I’d be delighted to stay even longer, beyond the next two years I have left on my contract.”

The 31-year-old’s prospective new deal would effectively see him end his career at the top level with United, though he harbours a desire to play in the Netherlands again before he retires.

- By Paul Clennam,

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