Nobody expected Holland to be in this position at Euro 2012 after two games. A loss to Germany, perhaps, but nobody foresaw their 1-0 loss to Nicklas Bendtner's Denmark.
They dominated the game against the Danes, but couldn't find the back of the net, and Van Persie had a shocker. He scored a scorcher against Germany but it was nothing more than a consolation, and he could be heading back to the Emirates sooner than any one expected.
Arsenal are currently standing on the edge of a precipice, if Van Persie signs on for another year - added to Podolski and Giroud one of who is signed and one almost - the Gunners can look forward to a title challenge.
It will be tough next season, with both Manchester sides looking to strengthen too, and Chelsea already have done, so the last thing Arsenal need is to lose their captain and star player.
Whoever they replace him with - Fernando Llorente has been mentioned - is no guarantee to settle and be as awesome as Van Persie, and the club would end up battling for third again rather than the title.
When he left for Euro 2012 he was one-and-a-half days into contract negotiations with the club, the timing couldn't have been worse, and Arsenal were left hanging.
What it has done is given the club time to progress the Giroud deal and show Van Persie that he certainly won't be asked to do it all on his own again next season.
Even so, should the unthinkable happen - Arsenal need it sorted as quickly as possible. Van Persie's motivation is trophies - and Arsenal offer no guarantees. It has been seven years since they won one, and the Emirates Cup doesn't count.
At 29 he can't afford to wait, so he needs to feel he is onto a sure thing, of which in football we all know there are none. Ask Cesc Fabregas, his Barcelona had to make do with only the Copa del Rey this year.
Samir Nasri may try to tell him different, and Manchester City have again been linked today with a big money bid for the striker, even if his dad insists he would not sign for another English club.
Through this week Juventus have been the main runners, with Czech legend Pavel Nedved supposedly dispatched to try to persuade the PFA Footballer of the Year to sign for the Scudetto winners.
Holland's elimination could be a big bonus for Arsenal, they will get to the bottom of the situation two or three weeks earlier than anticipated than had the Dutch reached the final, as many tipped them to.
But they are not quite there yet. If Holland beat Portugal and Denmark lose to Germany, all three of Holland, Portugal and Denmark will be level on three points. Head-to-head records won't count for anything because all three would have beaten each other once and lost once, and goal difference will be key.
Holland essentially need to beat Portugal by two clear goals and hope the Danes lose to Germany to go through. In most groups two straight losses means automatic elimination, but with Germany running roughshod over everybody else, the Group of Death is turning into a battle for survival.
It will be in Arsenal's favour for Van Persie to come home early, and they need Portugal to get a result against the Dutch. They could do with the real Cristiano Ronaldo turning up.
The 60-goal-striker was anonymous against Germany and conspicuous by two missed sitters against Denmark, overshadowed by two-goal Danish hero Nicklas Bendtner.
If Ronaldo finally gets into gear and starts scoring and creating goals, Holland will struggle to win by the margin they need to.
Then the Oranjes will finally be out and Robin van Persie can dodge questions on his future no more. It will have to be sorted out and ideally he would renew his Emirates deal.
If not, and he elects to move on, at least Arsenal will know and they can get on with the business of selling him sooner rather than later - they don't want to wait till August like with Fabregas and Nasri last summer and not have a chance to replace him.
It is why all Arsenal fans should break the habit of a lifetime and hope Cristiano Ronaldo can do them a favour on Sunday night.
Will Van Persie's early return be a good thing? Can Holland bounce back?
image: © jbagley