Premier League • England

Arsenal transfer news: Nicolas Pepe makes decision on Gunners future after changing agents

Nicolas Pepe, Ashley Young, Arsenal v Aston Villa, March 2022.

Arsenal’s record signing Nicolas Pepe is reportedly ready to push for a transfer away from the north London club this summer.

The Ivory Coast attacker moved to The Emirates in a £72million deal in 2019 but has struggled to make his mark at the club and is now only on the fringes of Mikel Arteta’s first-team squad.

Indeed, Pepe has scored just three times and added five assists in 22 appearances for the Gunners this term.

Arteta has often preferred England star Bukayo Saka in Pepe’s preferred position on the right-wing. And Saka’s outstanding form has made him virtually undroppable, leaving Pepe warming the bench.

And it would appear that his frustration has come to a head, with the 26-year-old looking for a way out.

A report from claims that Pepe has actually changed agents and given them the remit of finding him a new club.

However, the feeling appears to be mutual, with Arsenal ready to entertain offers for the player.

The report adds that Pepe is deemed expendable by Arteta and sporting director Edu. A sale would also provide the Gunners with cash to invest in other areas of the squad.

It’s also claimed that the attacker was reprimanded by Gunners coach Albert Stuivenberg for a mistake in the recent win over Leeds and for his lack of effort in Monday night’s damaging loss to Newcastle.

Indeed, Pepe may just have one final Arsenal in him, when the Gunners host Everton in Sunday’s season finale.

Return to France on the cards for Pepe

Both Marseille and Lyon have been linked with moves for the player, who excelled in France before his move to England.

However, Arsenal chiefs may have a problem offloading a player currently earning £140,000-a-week. Pepe also still has two years left on his contract so will not come cheap.

In all, Pepe has scored 27 goals and added 20 assists in 111 appearances for the club.

If they can get the player off their books then Arsenal are expected to have a major overhaul of their attacking players.

Both Alexandre Lacazette and Eddie Nketiah are out of contract this summer and can leave for nothing.

That would leave a glaring hole to fill, although a Manchester City star could be the answer

Gabriel Jesus is expected to be surplus to requirements at The Etihad after Erling Haaland’s signing.

The report adds that Arsenal are willing to pay up to £35m for the Brazilian, who’s open to the move. Indeed, the player’s representatives have already spoken with Edu about a move to north London.

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