Arsenal’s Van Persie delighted with match winning free kick

The Dutch striker scored both of the Gunners' goals to put them back in the top-half of the table and also reiterates his commitment to the club
Arsenal striker and captain Robin van Persie has hailed his teammates’ character following their 'much needed' 2-1 victory over Sunderland.

The Dutchman converted his side’s quickest ever Premier League goal to open the scoring, netting past Simon Mignolet after just 29 seconds, before Sebastian Larsson stunned the home side with a delightful free kick to equalize just before the break.

The Gunners had to call on their skipper once more to grab all three points, with Van Persie replicating Larsson’s set-piece heroics with just seven minutes to go in the game as the striker hit home a curling effort into the top corner.

Asked if it was an essential victory, he told Sky Sports: “Yes, a much needed one. We started really well, the first 20-25 minutes were really good, then we dropped a little bit. After that we let them come back into the game, we suffered a bit from there, be to be fair, great performance, great character because we’ve been there before in the last few minutes, 2-1 score.”

Arsenal has been known in the past to succumb to last moment nerves when narrowly in the lead, but Van Persie praised the Emirates crowd, as well as the contributions of his teammates.

“Of course, they pump with every single ball they can, we have to hand it to them, and to be fair all the back four, midfielders, everyone tried to help each other and did well, so credit to the whole team,” the forward said when asked if the crowd helped his team in those nervous moments.

The Dutchman's opener was the club's quickest in the Premier League, and the striker admitted it was purely instinct, revealing his surprise at the speed of it.

“It was my first touch as well,"he said. "It was a really good pass from Gervinho and I shot it and it went in quite nice, but I didn’t know it was the quickest one ever though.”

After scoring the winner, the striker removed his shirt as part of his celebration, an act that usually sees a player get booked, with this instance no different. However, Van Persie insists the card was worth it after winning the game for his team.

“Yes [it was worth the booking], very much," he he said. "I just felt confident and it was [in] my favorite position and it’s been a while, so I have to be critic, I have to look at myself on this because I’ve missed many in the past couple of months. So it was about time.”