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Aug 4, 2012

Vlaar keen for Van Persie to stay

New Aston Villa signing Ron Vlaar is hopeful his Netherlands compatriot Robin van Persie remains in the Premier League.

• Villa confirm Vlaar signing

Vlaar, 27, sealed his transfer to Villa this week, signing for an undisclosed fee on a three-year deal from Feyenoord.

The centre-back spoke with fellow Dutchman Van Persie during Euro 2012 and was persuaded to make the move to England.

He said: "I talked to Robin and several other players during the Euros. Robin told me if I had the chance then to come over, but it was still my decision and I'm very happy Aston Villa came in for me. I'm happy the deal was done.

"I also talked to Karim (El Ahmadi, also signed by Lambert from Feyenoord) and they all said the Premier League would really suit me."

Vlaar is keen to face Van Persie in the 2012-13 campaign, but the Arsenal striker has been linked with a move away from the Gunners, with Juventus one of the clubs interested.

Of Van Persie's future, Vlaar said: "I really don't know where he is going. I haven't talked to him lately.

"I just hope he stays in England so I can face him. I've trained against him with the national team and he is a great player. It would be a big loss if he leaves England."

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