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Beating European giants to land Pepe would give Emery a clear Mkhitaryan upgrade

(PHILIPPE HUGUEN/AFP/Getty Images)

Arsenal

Beating European giants to land Pepe would give Emery a clear Mkhitaryan upgrade

Lille winger Nicolas Pepe is attracting attention from across Europe but if Arsenal can win the race for his signature, they will have the pace and directness they have lacked since Alexis Sanchez and Theo Walcott left in the same transfer window.

According to French outlet Mercato 365, Arsenal are ready to battle the likes of Barcelona and Bayern Munich for the signature of 23-year-old Lille winger Nicolas Pepe.

The report claims that their hopes of landing the speedy wideman largely depend on whether they manage to qualify for the Champions League next season.

Landing Pepe won’t be easy as he is tied down with the Ligue 1 side until 2022 and both Barca and Bayern have high-profile wingers to replace.

 

The Catalans have not been impressed with Ousmane Dembele since he was brought in to replace Neymar, while Arjen Robben has announced he will leave Bavaria at the end of the season.

(DENIS CHARLET/AFP/Getty Images)

Unai Emery is so far doing a very good job with a squad that was largely assembled by Arsene Wenger and his high-tempo style of football requires more pace than the Gunners currently have in their ranks.

Arsenal lost Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Alexis Sanchez and Theo Walcott within a matter of months last season, leaving Alex Iwobi – who has been much improved under Emery – as the only genuine wideman who can offer pace.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan is a fine footballer, but bringing in Pepe would offer an upgrade in terms of potential and raw speed, both of which are sure to appeal to Emery.

mm

NCTJ trained journalist, focusing mainly on a digital football audience.

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