However, from the first minute it was clear that the hosting Addicks were not prepared to roll over.
The same player then scored what would prove to be the winning goal four minutes after the restart, with a strike that his manager Arsene Wenger would later describe as the "goal of a lifetime".
Hleb fed the ball down the line for full-back Emmanuel Eboue, who sent over an instant cross towards the edge of the Charlton area. Van Persie met it on the run and was able to get his leg up to a height that he had no right to, which in turn allowed him to send a volley flying beyond a helpless Scott Carson and into the net.
"It was the goal of a lifetime. He's played for a long time and I'm not sure he's scored one like that," Wenger said after the 2-1 win.
"I feel the cross was fantastic from Emmanuel Eboue. Robin took the ball at full pace and full power and his technique and his movement were perfect. The ball looked like it would go over the bar so when it came down and in the corner it was unbelievable."
Van Persie spent the next six years with Arsenal before joining Manchester United in the summer of 2012.