In-demand Lille forward Nicolas Pepe has welcomed reports Arsenal are willing to meet the exit clause in his contract and make a serious play to bring him to the Premier League in January.
The Ivorian has emerged as one of European football’s most sought-after stars this season on the back of a stellar campaign that has seen him play second fiddle to Kylian Mbappe only in terms of an attacking force across Europe’s top five leagues this season.
While Mbappe has either scored or created 15 goals this season, Pepe lies joint second on the list with 13, alongside Neymar and Luis Suarez.
And that form has seen him touted for a move to one of Europe’s big boys, with Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund, Man City, Chelsea and Arsenal all mentioned as suitors for the 23-year-old.
However, French outlet Telefoot claims Arsenal lead the chase to sign the winger and are ready to meet the €50m (£44m) release clause in his contract when the transfer window opens on January 1.
And while Pepe has suggested he isn’t looking to move in January, he has appeared to hint at a possible summer switch.
“A preference between Dortmund, Bayern or Arsenal? They’re all big clubs, I was not aware of these rumours, although it’s nice,” Pepe told Telefoot.
“Leave Lille at the end of the season? We do not even know what I’ll be doing tomorrow!”
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