Newcastle can play ‘gamble’ on Arsenal winger Nicolas Pepe, with a loan to buy offer this summer – according to former Leeds striker Noel Whelan.
During the 2018-19 Ligue 1 campaign, scoring 23 goals and adding 12 assists, the Ivory Coast forward became Arsenal’s record signing in 2019 by joining in a deal of £72million from Lille.
Nicolas Pepe has become somewhat of an enigmatic presence since – with the Gunners being tipped to cut their losses this summer, despite making an impressive start to life at The Emirates. Certainly, a replacement for the 26-year-old is yet to be found by Mikel Arteta, but with the ideologies, we’ve seen Mikel believe in – he’d definitely want him off before bringing anyone in through that doors at London Colney.
Rumours has it that Arsenal are willing to let go of Pepe for around £25m, with Newcastle tipped as potential suitors.
Whelan spoke about Nicolas Pepe with Football Insider: “He’s been a massive failure – that’s for sure. When you consider the money they paid for him, he’s been very average. It’s a really bad bit of business from Arsenal. If they can get £25 million for him, they need to be taking it – even if it’s a massive loss.
“Teams will be reluctant to pay that sort of fee for an inconsistent player like Pepe, though. It may well be a loan-to-buy deal. He’s really not contributed enough. Whether the Premier League is too tough for him? I don’t know – we know he came from France, which is a far easier league.
“A loan move may be something that Newcastle might fancy. These are the sort of players they will be targeting. He could turn his career around and end up being that big-ticket player. But right now, it’s a gamble.”
Having scored 27 goals in 107 appearances in all competitions for Arsenal, Nico is not considered a complete disaster. Nonetheless, he forged his given price tag and reputation in France, the Reds from North London have to be disappointed with his overall contribution.