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Van Persie desperate for Arsenal to retain top players

Arsenal striker Robin van Persie has called on the club to avoid a repeat of the major departures of a year ago. The Gunners lost Mathieu Flamini, Alexander Hleb and Gilberto Silva at the end of last season.

"The main thing for me is that we stay together," Van Persie said.

"If we lose three or four every year it is hard to get the spirit in. Hopefully we can stay here and have a real go at it.

"If we can produce games like we did this year there is room for improvement - if you look at our midfield it is between 20 and 22."

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