Date: 10th September 2023 at 10:12pm
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Nicolas Pepe has left Arsenal after his contract was terminated by the club in for him to join Turkish side Trabzonspor. 

Pepe has been in Istanbul completing his move to Turkey as Arsenal look to clean house of their fringe players.

Pepe joined Arsenal from Ligue 1 side Nice for a then club-record fee of £72m in August 2019; the 28-year-old made 112 appearances for the Gunners, scoring 27 times which makes it all the more disappointing for the move never to work out.

Pepe was a mainstay in the Gunners squad in the first two years, but ultimately failed to fully adapt to English football. That saw him join OGC Nice on loan last season but his return to France was short-lived with injuries preventing him from replicating the form that convinced the Gunners to sign him.

Is Nicolas Pepe a flop?

Unfortunately, if the debate is based purely on fee paid and fee received at his departure, then almost certainly Pepe will be considered a flop.

Not only that, but he struggled to replicate the form he showed at Lille which convinced Arsenal to part with a club record fee at the time.

The 2018/19 season in Lique 1 saw Pepe rack up 22 goals and 11 assists in the league which is an incredible return for a wide player.

The following year, his first in North London, the Ivory Coast international managed just eight goals and ten assists. This was followed by a more productive 16 goals and five assists in 2020/21 but that’s where his form peaked for the Gunners.

Pepe’s form would then nosedive and eventually pushed out by Arteta.

There’s argument to suggest that the impact of Covid and playing behind close doors wouldn’t have helped Pepe settle in his first few seasons.

But ultimately he was far too inconsistent for Arteta who is showing in the last 18 months a drive to completely change the mindset of the club, as well as the type of player he recruits.

 

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