The striker spent almost a decade at Arsenal before leaving this summer, after a drawn out saga over his future which took until August to resolve.
Arsenal fans are left feeling hugely embittered towards their former hero, and the thought of seeing him in a United shirt will stir emotions of anger and sickness.
Manager Arsene Wenger has urged supporters to respect the striker, who has scored 11 times in 15 games for his new side.
He said: "I hope a respectful [reception] because he played for us for eight years, he's done well, very well for us, and you want him to be respected."
That may be true, he did do well for Arsenal, very well in fact last season, but that only makes his 'betrayal' even worse.
We use the word 'betrayal' because that is exactly how supporters have described his switch, stirred by the emotion of seeing a club captain and top goalscorer who had previously been shown great loyalty by his manager and supporters through all his injury troubles, walk out on them to further his own career.
It would be one thing to see him ply his trade abroad, but for a rival it can really come back to bite them, and they will hope dearly that is not the case tomorrow.
It should not be forgotten of course that Arsenal received a substantial £24 million for the Van Persie deal, and have themselves moved on, and that money is currently lying with the board, waiting to be spent. Based on this season so far, the relevant question this match will show us, is whether the new Arsenal are moving upwards or United are leaving them behind?
Tomorrow's fixture will be significant in that if United win they will go nine points above Arsenal; after just 10 games. With that in mind, it isn't a game the Gunners can afford to lose, and if they can pull off a surprise victory then they will be just three points behind the Red Devils.
Arsenal's travelling support are a fair bunch, but the sale of Van Persie this summer cut deep, and the wounds may be covered, but they are still raw.
Wenger was right not to inflame dislike of the striker who did do a lot for the club, he is right that should not be forgotten, but if he truly expects fans not to boo him and vent their feelings of anger then he is likely mistaken.
Should Arsenal fans show Van Persie respect? What do you think?
image: © cactusbeetroot