What exactly defines loyalty? It could be your dog's loyalty, your loyalty to your team, your family, your country, anything really. But can you really define your job as something to be loyal to? In lieu of recent occurrences, I've decided to try and explain this, and why I believe that workplace loyalty is something that's truly idiotic.
We've already read plenty about RVP, how he's handled his situation and what determined him to leave Arsenal, either soon or down the road, so I don't really need to go into that. It does make me kind of angry about how he's decided to go about this, by releasing a statement before he's even been sold. There are times to open your mouth, and times to keep them shut, and this was one that should have been kept in. Not only does it hurt his potential asking price, but also the club and it's fans. This was someone who's openly expressed his love for the club, how he's been a fan for years, and how he loves playing with the Arsenal crest above his heart.
Frankly though, it's stupid for us fans to think that any player who says that will hold true to his word. Let's take an average example of an employee. He/She loves his/her job, loves the people they work with, doesn't make a great wage and knows they could get better elsewhere, but doesn't actively pursue anything else because they're content with what they have. Suddenly, a better job appears, they have a good shot at getting it, applies and interviews for the position, and now they have that offer on the table. Wouldn't you take that opportunity? I know I sure as hell would, if it means a better financial future for not only me, but the ability to provide for my future family, my future kids, my future grandchildren even, I would take it in a heartbeat. It would suck having to leave your old job, all the friends you made there, and the occasional good memories, but it's something I have to do, because in my life, my family comes first.
Getting back to RVP, and my prior statement, your probably thinking that 150k plus a week is plenty enough to support your family off of. But as a professional athlete, there's more than just making a dollar. RVP himself is approaching the wrong side of 30, and all he has to show for it are a couple of player of the year awards he just won months ago and a flimsy FA Cup medal. He clearly wants to accomplish more, because given his injury record and his increasing age, he doesn't have much time. Whether it be with City or any other team, players have the opportunity to leave and go elsewhere, and that's exactly what we should let RVP do, and we shouldn't shred him apart for thinking he can do so.
Getting back to loyalty, why should any fan think that any player is going to stay loyal to their team, no matter what they say. Would you rather have a player who says he doesn't care about the club and look and sound disgruntled? Of course not. Nobody ever says out loud at their own job that they hate working there, because odds are it will get back to management, who will probably go out and look for someone who wants that opportunity instead of someone who wants to get out, everybody is replaceable. To me, Arsenal is an employer of footballers, and RVP is a footballer who wants to go to another employer and accomplish what he wants to accomplish, how can you truly hate someone for that? RVP isn't a traitor, someone who's jumping ship, breaking his supposed loyalty to the club, he's just doing what he wants to do. Arsenal have done a lot for him, and he's done a lot for us as well. We've been the fortunate witnesses of incredible goals, and basically RVP himself saving Arsenal's ass a few times this past year as well. What Arsenal gave to RVP, RVP gave to Arsenal in return.
I compare RVP to my opinion on LeBron James. Both players are the best at what they do, both players are leaving, or left, to accomplish what they want to accomplish elsewhere because they feel that their current setting can't provide that, and both are leaving on a sour, almost likewise note (except RVP doesn't have a ridiculous ego and didn't televise his decision). Either way though, I can't blame them though, as players and employees, they have that freedom to leave and search elsewhere, because in business, there's no such thing as loyalty and there never was.