‘That’s not Martin’ – Arsenal duo disagree with FIFA skill rating of teammates

Aaron Ramsdale and Rob Holding discussed his teammates latest FIFA ratings this week, and the Arsenal pair agreed that Nicolas Pepe should be the only five star skill rating in the squad, not Martin Odegaard.

It is true that our club has just one player rated with a five-star skill rating currently, with Martin Odegaard the holder of that prestigious statistic. His neat backheel in the build up to his latest goal against Watford definitely credits that decision, but defensive pair Ramsdale and Holding claim that there is a player more deserving of the rating.

Nicolas Pepe is claimed to have a skillset likened to Ronaldinho, a massive comparison given his amazing talents, but the pair had no hesitation in agreeing that the Ivory Coast international was the clear choice.

When the duo were asked who Arsenal’s only five-star player must be, Ramsdale quickly interrupted with: “Pepe”, with Rob just behind him backing up his statement, adding: “Pepe, surely”.

Both pulled faces when informed that Pepe was just rated at 4*, and when informed that it was the Norway captain who was in fact their most skilful player, Ramsdale shook his head and said “nope”.

Holding made it clear that “Skills is Pepe”, and Ramsdale added “Skills means Ronaldinho flicks and tricks… that’s not Martin”.

Skills can of course mean a variation of different things, not just a neat dribble to distract the defender, and Odegaard has definitely begun showing just how skilful he can be in recent weeks with his confidence beginning to shine through.

Should Pepe be getting more game time given his advanced skillset? Do you think his team-mates believed he should play more?


Tags Aaron Ramsdale Martin Odegaard Nicolas Pepe Rob Holding


  1. Utd 3 Spurs 2.
    Great result for Arsenal.
    Remember this day. Top 4 was secured.
    Unless we lose to the foxes 🙂
    Utd maximum now is 77 points.
    Spurs maximum is 78
    Arsenals maximum 87.
    Unless Spurs and Utd win all their remaining games Arsenal can now probably afford to lose
    to Liverpool Chelsea Westham Utd and Spurs and still get 4th. Both Utd and Spurs have to go to Anfield. If we can win one of our home games v Liverpool or especially Man U we are are home and hosed. But beating those pesky Foxes must happen first. COYG 🙂

    1. Unfortunately, there is no math in football that really works. That’s just why Supercomputer keeps getting it wrong all the time.

      If they were robots playing, they would get it right. But we are dealing here with human beings, and this involves a lot of unpredictability.

      However, your calculations make some sense. If we can win at least 9 of the remaining 13 games, it’s possible to make top 4 because Man U and Spurs will surely still drop points along the way.

  2. what an indebtment on our current manager for his inability to get the most out of a player who’s clearly impressed his fellow teammates with his footballing gifts…still surprised he’s been ghosted in such a fashion, considering our goal-scoring woes at times this season and the form he displayed in the second half of last year…I would have tried playing him up top, at least once or twice, especially once Auba was benched then subsequently shipped to Barca…it seems incredibly short-sighted not to give opportunities to Pepe, considering the investment, rather than rolling out one of our two current Strikers/CFs, who are clearly on their way out and can’t seem to find the back of the net with any regularity…MA was lucky that ESR wasn’t available for our late game heroics against Wolves, as I very much doubt Pepe would have even seen the pitch if another plausible option were on the bench

  3. @TRVL4
    Be quiet you chronic whiner!
    How much of those skills have you seen on the pitch against opponents?
    If you were a manager, your team would like identity.
    The system first, then the player next. if you can’t shine in a system, you will sit down till you learn.

    you need to understand that attitudeis important. Holding and Elneny are still hear cos of that and so skillful bla bla bla Gwendozy, Ozil and Auba are gone. If you cant bring it, you sit or you go.

    No doubt Pepe is skillful but how much of that do we see when he’s on the pitch…what about productivity, gelling with his team-mates?

    in this team and system, you cant sacrifice Laca for anyone except he brings what Laca does and more.

    People want him in the Strikers position…why? emotions.
    you just want to force him on the pitch.

    I see your comments. you emotional in most of it and you try to sisquise that with the terms and grammer… which you take for objectivity. you can’t hide your emotional feelings of dislkie towards Arteta. So, there’s always something for you to whine about even when the facts say otherwise.

    Pepe’s only seeing little game time now because he seems to be changing his attitude to match the team’s. He is not even a starter for his national team. He comes off the bench. Most people don’t know that. He managed to put in good performance this African Cup of Nations because he has started to change his attitude like Ateta wanted and he stated that about Pepe’s Change of attitude. So you can’t slate Arteta for his lack of game time.

    ESR has been good coming off the bench and scoring goals, If you were manager and he is fit, against wolves would you leave him on the bench and bring in Pepe considering his form?

    you choices, where you are now, cannot be tested to know if it will work. they are inconsequential. if you make decisons on the pitch in real time, that will be assessed afterward, I doubt if you might do as good as Arteta or even act differently.

    plus you have the benefit of hindsight.

    in all this, who are you to judge?

    1. so interesting that you would have the unmitigated gall to suggest that I shouldn’t judge anyone, considering your insanely judgmental rant on display above…unlike yourself, I have the ability to properly voice my concerns in a logical and legible manner, whereas you appear to have got all up in your feelings then proceeded to simply vomit a series of words onto a computer screen….like this gem “you cant sacrifice Laca for anyone except he brings what Laca does and more” or this other rather insightful tidbit, “you try to sisquise that with the terms and grammer”….seriously, you should stay squarely in your lane, where rulers are used for reading, shiny objects are highly desirable distractions and corks are on forks, just in case

      btw my comments never suggested that Pepe should be a main cog in the organizational wheel, but instead that he should have been given more opportunities, in light of the fact that he was our second highest scorer last season and considering our sizeable monetary outlay…that way, even if he failed to pass muster, we wouldn’t irreparably sully his potential resale value…after all, this is supposed to be a “rebuilding” project, so we can’t afford to be so cavalier when it comes to the asset management side of the business

      as for him being given an opportunity up top, I suggested that he be given a couple, at most, opportunities to prove his worth…maybe you didn’t know this but he has been deployed as a Striker before arriving here; not to mention, it’s not like MA hasn’t done his fair share of shoehorning players into unfamiliar and/or less preferable positions

      sweet dream little Snowflake

  4. I googled…why Nicolas pepe isn’t playing regularly…I found a interview with Arteta in the mirror.uk

    Arsenal manager Arteta claims the treatment is nothing personal and says that the Gunners’ lack of involvement in European competitions this season is to blame.

    …“Obviously with the amount of games we have are having, there’s not enough room for all those players.
    “With Nico’s situation it’s something similar. I’ve highlighted on many occasions it’s because of what I see every day. That’s with Nico as well.
    “But he needs more opportunities to show what he can do and in the last few games, he hasn’t had them.”
    “Again, I have to try to make that decision on what I see every single day. And to be fair, Nico is really willing and really willing to help the team.
    “The reality is that the position he is playing, Bukayo has been playing regularly there and he’s been fantastic. So it’s not been easy for him to find that time.”

    I don’t think Arteta has any intention to play pepe in the striker position….this interview was before the Leeds game

  5. Which should be more important to us as a team right now between 4th place on the league table and increasing Pepe’s market value. Therefore you are guilty as charged. I await your expectedly illogical response. You are not the l type to give up easily on these things

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