When Nicholas Pepe arrived at Arsenal from Lille this summer, he was hailed as the prolific goalscoring winger that Emery’s tactics were crying out for. But he taken much longer to adapt than we expected and after scoring 35 goals in 74 appearances for Lile, he has only managed one in his first 7 games for Arsenal, and that was because Aubameyang passed up the chance to take a penalty so the Frenchman could finally get on the scoresheet.
He was particularly unimpressive against Manchester United where he gave the ball away 17 times, according to the stats, and he had to be asked about it at some time. “It’s not been easy, we must tell the truth,” he told RMC, as quoted on TalkSport.
“I’m not good enough in my stats or my usual form, it’s not the same as in Lille or during the Liverpool match early in the season.
“The confidence must come back. I am not very worried. People may be worried about statistics, but I’m not.
“I have to keep working because the level is different, so is the language.
“It’s a new championship for me. I have to adapt quickly but it will not be long.”
To be fair, new players are usually given a settling in period before being thrown into every game, and even Thierry Henry took a while before finding his scoring boots after arriving in North London. Maybe Pepe will be fine once he gets a grasp of the language and knows his way around his new home, but we hope he doesn’t take too long about it. He has a big reputation to live up to…