Ray Parlour has given a critical verdict on Arsenal star Nicolas Pepe, who he’s urged to be more adventurous in Premier League games like he was in the Europa League last night.
The Gunners beat Molde 3-0 on Thursday night in the Europa League group stages and Pepe was one of the standout individuals.
Pepe, who earns £100,000-a-week (Spotrac), scored one with a brilliant left-footed finish and was such an attacking threat all game cutting infield from the right wing.
The 25-year-old has a lot of making up to do in the Arsenal dressing room, after he was sent off last weekend for a headbutt in the draw to Leeds United and he’ll now serve a three-game suspension in the Premier League.
Despite his struggles in the league, he’s come alive in the European competitions and three of his four goals this season have been in the Europa League.
Ex-Gunners star Parlour feels that Pepe plays it too safe in possession during league matches and wants to see him be more expressive to show off his dribbling and goal threat.
“He was much better last night I must admit. He’s better when he runs at players, commits players. He takes the easy option usually in the Premier League. Run at full-backs and make them commit. He’s good, when he gets on his left foot he’s got a good strike on him,” Parlour told talkSPORT.
“It’s alright doing it against smaller sides, you’ve got to do it again the big sides. You’ve got to make that impact he made last night against the teams in the premier League.
“He’s showed glimpses he can do it in the Premier League, but he hasn’t done it on a regular basis. You go back to consistency, you’ve got to do it week in, week out.”
Pepe will watch on from the sidelines for upcoming league games against Wolverhampton Wanderers, Tottenham and Burnley, something which should massively disappoint him.
He’s not been able to discover any kind of form in the Premier League this campaign for Mikel Arteta’s side and he’s got even more to prove to the manager after his recent ill-discipline.
But the right-winger proved with ex-club Lille he’s got talent and he plays with confidence in the Europa League, something Arsenal need to try unlock in the league.