Robin van Persie
This interview in general is OK, but does not project as much proficiency as some of the other candidates I have written reports about. This being said, he delivers his interview at a good pace with a good range of vocabulary and a few very apt expressions along the way.
General issues and pronunciation
At some points, this interview gets a little bit repetitive and he seems to use quite simple sentence structures. This interview is very specific i.e. sport related and demands answers that do not demonstrate his full range of vocabulary. What is quite noticeable is that he has quite a strong accent. This is particularly noticeable with the lack of ‘th’. Instead of this, he tends to use either the ‘d’,’t’ and ‘f’ sound. This is quite a common problem, which is encountered by many people when learning English. With Robin van Persie it is most apparent at around 7 minutes when he said ‘when I scored my third goal’ – it sounded like ‘turd goal’! There are a couple of grammar points which arose, which were very minor. For example at around the 1 min 15 second mark he says ‘to come to England was a great move’ as opposed to ‘coming to England’. Directly after this, he made a couple of mistakes with prepositions. He said ‘we want to be the number one of England and in the end of the world’. It would have been better to say ‘We want to be number one in England and also the world’. However, these do not detract from the overall understanding of what he is trying to say. It may be a comfort to know that even the most proficient learners of English make mistakes with their prepositions – and in general, people find these a bit of a nightmare to get their head around!
He tends to use the word ‘these days’ quite a lot, which is a little repetitive, but at around the 2 min 20 mark he made the lovely expression ‘back in the day’, which was very fitting for what he was referring to and a very natural expression for native English speakers.
Coherence of the interview
Robin van Persie delivered his interview with lots of enthusiasm and a good range of intonation, which really got his point across and added emphasis at the correct points. On the whole, the interview sounded a little staccato in that in general, his words did not really flow together – each word was rounded off properly but this hindered the natural flow of the sentence and thus restricted a more natural sounding English accent. This is another common problem with learners of English and does get better the more practice you get. There were no real points where the wrong vocabulary was used, or things were ambiguous, but as I said at the beginning of this report, the content of the interview was very specific and in fairness, as a professional football player that has spent a long time at English clubs, he should be able to talk about the more technical side of the game!
Conclusions and ratings
On the whole this was a very honest interview. Robin van Persie has quite a Dutch sounding accent, but his intonation and grammar were noticeably very good. The only ‘mistakes’ that were made as such were those typical to Dutch natives – and he is Dutch after all – but nothing that couldn’t be fixed should he wish to address the issues!