LONDON - In the summer, he came to Arsenal for good fanfare, and the club did not hesitate to shell out € 80 million. Minimal fans of the Emirates Stadium promised big things. But so far none of this has happened. Nicolas Pépé, a reinforcement from Côte d'Ivoire, does not show up in the most positive light. One of the few brilliant moments came only at the end of October during the European League duel against Guimaraes (3: 2), who turned two goals in the 80s and 93 minutes.
In Sunday's match on Carrow Road against Norwich (2: 2), he didn't appear in the base line-up and the new coach Fredrik Ljungberg didn't even send him into the game. He chose Lucas Torreira, Bukaya Saku and Brazilian midfielder Martinelli as three alternates. Pépé thus remained only sitting in a tracksuit and watch his teammates fight for points they (better to say, the point they got mainly thanks to the perfect goalkeeper Bernd Len). Many fans and experts are asking what is happening with the most expensive boost in club history, which has not yet paid off a blatant transfer amount.
At a post-match press conference, Ljungberg did not avoid the question of a Côte d'Ivoire. Why didn't the Swedish manager use it in a match when he needed to push and kill for three points? "Nicolas is a very good player, but I try to reflect on what I see in training and what is happening every day. This is how I rate," making it clear that Pépé must work for a week in training units before he can think of sharp match minutes.
Pépé has been able to get used to the bench during the last month and watch the match from this place completely. It happened to him in a draw against Wolverhampton and Thursday during a home loss with German Frankfurt. So far, the fast African Winger has a problem adapting to the English style of football and has not scored a goal from the open action. All three precise hits came after standard situations.
He arrived in Arsenal in the summer from Lille, France, where he worked his way up to the star of the local competition. He scored 22 league goals for Lille, he was support of the Nord-Pas-de-Calais club and the owner himself said during the season that he would not be able to keep him. The big clubs knocked too loudly and the money offered was simply unavoidable. More productive from Pépé last season was only Kylian Mbappé and behind the record acquisition of Arsenal remained names such as Edinson Cavani and Neymar with 18 and respectively. 15 goals.
Arsenal occupies after a draw with Norwich eighth in the 20-member Premier League table, losing seven points in fourth place. Although Arsenal dominated in the begining of the game, Teemo Pukki's goal sent him to its knees. A draw 2: 2 was finally saved Aubameyang, who scored the first goal.
Gunners have been waiting to win eight games and have survived the catastrophic November. They have four draws and two losses. The last triumph was recorded in October against Vitoria Guimaraes, thanks to the two goals of Pépé. They will get a chance for such a reparation on Thursday when the guests Brighton in the league match.
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