By Joe Brewin

Arsène Wenger believes Robin van Persie has matured a great deal as a footballer.

Van Persie is enjoying arguably his finest spell in an Arsenal shirt, hitting seven goals in his last five Premier League appearances for the Club.

His manager says the captain has come a long way since his arrival as a wide-eyed 21-year-old from Feyenoord back in 2004.

“He has totally matured,” said Wenger. “He is much more focused on efficiency.

“You have to give him credit as he is a football lover. He came here as a winger and when you look at his numbers, you can only say he is fantastic.

“I bought Thierry [Henry] because he has power and pace, Robin more because I wanted to add a technical player in front of Fabregas - and it worked. He has scored straight away.“

Copyright 2014 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source 4 Nov 2011