Mark Hughes’ side condemned the visitors to their first defeat in eight league games with a 2-1 victory at Loftus Road, allowing Tottenham to draw level with the Gunners in third after their 3-1 win over Swansea on Saturday.
Arsenal next face title hopefuls Manchester City at Emirates Stadium – and Van Persie admits his side must beat Roberto Mancini’s men on Sunday if they are to stay in the hunt for third spot.
“We have seven more games to play, we can finish third,” Van Persie told Arsenal Player. “We have a good chance of finishing third but it’s not going to be easy.
“It’s a very strong league, everyone is fighting for every point and our first step towards that is next week against City.
“When you have eight games to go and you are only three points ahead, nothing has been done. I think that’s quite clear.
“Again, we have to look at ourselves and our next game is in eight days against Manchester City – and if we want to secure that third spot we have to beat them, simple as that.
“They are second now, so they want the points too. It [will be] an interesting game, we’re looking forward to it because we have seven big games to play.
“I’m looking forward to it, but we have to wait a long time unfortunately before we can actually play it.”
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