Arsenal manager Arsène Wenger insists the Gunners were left with "no choice" but to sell their captain Robin van Persie to Manchester United.
Sir Alex Ferguson's side confirmed on Wednesday night they had agreed a fee, thought to be £23m, for the Dutch striker who is expected to undergo a medical on Thursday and finalise terms.
"He is at Manchester United, unfortunately for us. The transfer was finalised in the afternoon," said Wenger while working for the French TV station TF1.
"It's never great to lose players of that quality but he only had a year contract so we do not have a choice.
"We have already recruited since we bought [Olivier] Giroud and [Lukas] Podolski who originally were intended to offset the departure of van Persie," he concluded.
When you were young, 2004
Debut, 2004 Community Shield
Goal number one vs. City in the League Cup
Complemented by the Clock
The red mist at St Mary's, 2005
A semi-final brace at Cardiff, 2005
Aiming high to score in the 2005 FA Cup final shootout
A second red
A superb solo strike against Blackburn, 2005
Charlton, 2006. His greatest goal?
A sorry sight of yesteryear
"One day, we <em>will</em> get on well."
"This counts as a major trophy, right?"
Sent off for violent conduct at Stoke. Irony lurks
Three against Wigan, 2011
2011 League Cup final scorer...
but still a loser to Birmingham
A ridiculous red in the Camp Nou
Celebrating a trio at Chelsea during the epic 5-3
Hat-trick vs. Blackburn
Downing Liverpool with a double
Uncool with Krul
PFA Player of the Year, 2012
Bidding goodbye at the Hawthorns