Premier League • England

Arsenal flop agrees terms with European outfit as contract terms are revealed for £72m star

Ben Stewart
Arsenal forward Nicolas Pepe

Arsenal forward Nicolas Pepe

Arsenal flop Nicolas Pepe has agreed personal terms with Turkish side Besiktas as the two clubs are now locked into negotiations.

As Arsenal have added the likes of Declan Rice, Jurrien Timber and Kai Havertz to their squad so far, they are now looking to sell some of their unwanted stars.

The long-term future of Pepe has been up in the air for quite some time and his exit this summer comes as no real surprise.

He spent last season out on loan with Nice and didn’t seem to have a part in Mikel Arteta’s long-term plans for the future.

The winger had recently been linked with a move to Besiktas and the Turkish club now appear to be closing in on his signature.

According to Fanatik, Besiktas have now ‘reached an agreement’ with Pepe and have ‘shook hands’ with the Arsenal star regarding his new salary.

The report claims that Pepe will earn €2.5m/year plus bonuses in Turkey, which works out at just under €50,000 per week.

Besiktas are hopeful that they won’t need to pay a transfer fee as they are waiting for Arsenal to terminate his existing contract.

As things stand, Pepe is contracted with the club until 2024, but they could decide to cut their ties with the winger and release him free of charge.

Arsenal are yet to make a final decision on the winger, but Fabrizio Romano recently clarified that Pepe is “out of the project” under Arteta.

Pepe needs a fresh start

While the Ivory Coast winger did show some flashes of quality at Arsenal, he never managed to live up to the hype that surround him back in 2019.

Arsenal splashed £72m to prize him away from Lille, but he struggled to consistently show his class. A permanent move elsewhere is probably the best thing for his career right now.

Pepe himself recently gave an interview with Colinterview where he opened up on his time in North London with Arteta.

“At the end of the first season, he spoke with me and told me to do this or that. The second season comes along, I was a substitute. I was going mad.

“How could I be a substitute when he said he counted on me? Everything is spinning in your head. I was a substitute for [what felt like] 10 matches.

“But that improved in the sense that he gave me a chance, I scored against Sheffield United at the Emirates. The confidence started to come back.

“He (Arteta) helped me in every way, on a tactical level, in terms of game intelligence because his philosophy requires a lot of intelligence. He knew my style of play wasn’t waiting in possession, it was cutting inside, it wasn’t waiting out on the right.

“Before, I was a bit freer. I had to wait in my zone, and I wasn’t like that before. These are parts of my game that he tried to improve. He always wanted to help me with all of that.”

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