Van Persie reveals 't-shirt tribute' meant for 'close friend' who demised day before match

Last Updated: Sun, Dec 30, 2012 10:00 hrs

Manchester United's star striker Robin Van Persie has revealed that his goal tribute on a t-shirt against West Bromwich Alboin on Saturday was meant for a close friend who passed away 24 hours before the match.

After scoring the second and final goal in United's 2-0 home victory against Albion, Persie revealed a tribute on a T-shirt.

In the hours after the game, mystery surrounded who the message 'R.I.P. Tchuna We Will Never Forget You' was relating to with a number of social networking websites and news sites and football forums speculating their own theories.

Manchester United Football Club later contacted Mail Online and said that the message was for a close friend of Persie who had died 24-hours before the game.

However, it appeared that Twitter and Facebook users refused to be convinced by that information until the Dutchman revealed it himself.

Discussion on Twitter has led many to believe that it was actually the name of the Indian girl who was gang raped and later succumbed to her injuries in a Singapore hospital, the Daily Mail reports.

While others have put forward the theory that it is the name of the Dutch linesman who was beaten and kicked to death while officiating at a junior football game in Holland.

The fact his name has been revealed as Richard Nieuwenhuizen may well dispel that theory, the report added. (ANI)

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