Why Manchester City shouldn’t make a move for Nicolas Pepe
According to the Times, Manchester City have been linked with a move for Lille attacker Nicolas Pepe. The 26-year-old has been in fiery form for the Ligue 1 outfit this term, scoring 8 goals and providing 5 assists in 12 league appearances. (Stats courtesy – Whoscored)
He has played a huge role in Lille’s rise to second place this season. Pep Guardiola is keen to bolster his record-breaking attack further but it doesn’t seem like the most feasible move for the champions.
Pepe is surely a huge talent at the age of 26 and has certainly shown great maturity in his play. But the Cityzens already possess a plethora of top quality players in their squad. Raheem Sterling has once again started the season in prolific form.
New signing Riyad Mahrez has also settled well into the squad and is now producing the goods on a consistent basis. After making a slow start, the Algerian is now a proper Guardiola player. Leroy Sane has not received regular game time and yet, he has managed to remain potent in front of the goal.
This means that the Ivorian international will be way down the pecking order should he make the move to the Etihad. The Cityzens have already racked up the most number of goals this season and all their stars are more than experienced in the Premier League. The Sky Blues have scored a total of 33 goals in 11 games, and there’s every chance they could go on to beat their tally from last year.
Pepe, on the other hand, is a new arrival and there’s no telling how the 26-year-old will fit into the league. Big players who have flourished in other leagues have failed to make a mark in the English top-tier. Though the Ivorian has proven his quality, it could still take him time to acclimatise to Guardiola’s philosophy.
The champions also possess a number of able options to come off the bench and make a difference. Hence, there’s no shortage of options or a lack of cover in the squad. Players like Benjamin Mendy and Fabian Delph are also versatile enough to play in a number of positions and systems.
Manchester City should surely not make a move for Nicolas Pepe. Pep Guardiola can instead use those funds to invest in other areas in the squad.