Noel Whelan has claimed that Newcastle and Everton could look to sign Nicolas Pepe on loan in January, despite Arsenal’s want of £25 Million for his signature.
The Ivory Coast international has failed to show the level of consistency that they would have liked after shelling out a club record fee to sign him from Lille in the summer of 2019.
Pepe now finds himself behind a host of players in the pecking order, with Bukayo Saka and Emile Smith Rowe having earned their place in the wide roles in a 4-4-2 system of late, and according to Football.London, Arsenal are now claimed to be willing to allow him to leave for £25 Million .
Noel Whelan claims that the clubs should look to strike a loan deal with the Gunners however before making a decision on whether to make his move more permanent.
“I think if you’re going to take a chance on Nicolas Pepe, we know there’s a player there. We know that there’s a skilful winger in him,” Whelan told the FootballInsider.
“A loan move is the safest move you can make. You’ve got to make sure that you get a player in, you see how he settles and you see his performances.
“Only then can you judge him on the fact that you want to spend £25million. Right now, Arsenal are offloading him or wanting to offload him for a reason. Because he’s not done it.
“That is the reason why players bought for big money are then very shortly after loaned out or sold. Because they’ve just not done it for the club that spent the cash.
“For Newcastle and the likes of Everton, to give him the opportunity, to give them that second bite of the cherry in the Premier League, the loan move is the safest move to go down.
“You’re not wasting any money. All you’re paying is a percentage of the wages. Then, at the end of the season, you can assess the situation.”
I struggle to believe we would go for such a deal to be honest. Pepe’s departure would mean that we need to invest in the transfer market, or promote from the youth teams, and unless there is strong belief in the latter, a loan move simply makes no sense in January.
There is also the fact that Pepe has seemingly played his best football in the final months of the campaign since joining the club, and a strong end to our season may well be needed if we are to finish in the top four, while there is always the risk of losing players as the season runs on.
Do you believe Arsenal would consider allowing Pepe to leave on loan in January?