Why Nicolas Pepe would be a brilliant signing for Arsenal
Arsenal have looked like a team reborn under the guidance of Unai Emery. The free-flowing football that we’re used to seeing from all good Arsenal sides is finally back after they lost their character as a team during the last few seasons under Arsene Wenger.
The signing of Alexandre Lacazette has turned out to be fruitful for the gunners. Additionally, the summer recruitments of Lucas Torreira, Matteo Guendouzi and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang have all been positive endorsements of the Gunners’ transfer policy.
One position which the Gunners have failed to improve is the wing. Alex Iwobi and Henrikh Mkhitaryan are the only viable wingers available to Emery at the moment. While Ozil or Aubameyang playing in that position when required seems to be fine, they have even resorted to sticking Danny Welbeck on the flanks for certain games.
A recent report by The Times claims that Arsenal have decided not to offer Welbeck a new contract and that he will be allowed to leave on a free transfer come the end of the season. The report also suggests that the recent ankle injury he suffered would keep him out of action for most of the season.
This may urge Unai Emery and the board to look for a replacement in the winter transfer window as there are times when Lacazette and Aubameyang are both required in the central areas of the pitch. Not having another natural winger on the bench could mean bad news for Arsenal.
It seems like the search for a replacement has begun as suggested by The Sun, who claim that Unai Emery is eying a swoop for Lille attacker Nicolas Pepe. It is also reported that premier league rivals Chelsea and Tottenham too are chasing the signature of the current Ligue 1 top-scorer.
Lille have to come to terms with the fact that they will not have an option but to let their Ivorian international leave when the bigger teams come calling. Ahead of Frenchman Kylian Mbappe in the Ligue 1 goalscoring charts, he has scored 12 already this season and looks like quite the prospect.
Equally capable of playing on either flank or down the middle, his long shots pack quite a punch and he also possesses a keen eye for assists, having already notched up 5 so far this season.
A player who is capable of the sudden change of pace, at the end of the day, he’s a team player and loves to set up opportunities for his teammates. If given support from the likes of Mesut Ozil and Aubameyang, Pepe could tear the premier league apart if he was to sign for the Gunners.