The price is right
There is good news for the Gunners. Reports claim that Nicolas Pepe could be sold by the French club Lille for “the right price”.
The 23-year-old winger has long been linked to Arsenal. Although a January move didn’t happen, reports from France say that the two clubs remain in contact and a deal is close to being agreed.
The Sun claims that Lille are prepared to sell the forward “with a price tag of around £50m”, a figure that could be within the grasp of Arsenal.
With 17 goals in 28 games this season, Pepe has been scouted by several teams. Lille have admitted that a club of their stature isn’t in the position to look a gift horse in the mouth.
“We are not a rich club,” said Lille’s sporting director Luis Campos to the French broadcaster Telefoot. “It means that if a really good proposal comes in for Pepe, we have to sell him.”
According to the Sun, Arsenal manager Unai Emery has identified Pepe as the perfect player to supply the crosses from the flanks for Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette.
The only fly in the ointment is the rumour that both Manchester United and Barcelona are “in the race for Pepe’s signature”.
Monchi for Mislintat
According to Metro, Monchi will “spearhead” Arsenal’s push to sign Pepe. The Gunners are said to have reached an agreement with Roma’s current sporting director.
It’s no secret they’ve been chasing Monchi after Sven Mislintat’s departure as their head of recruitment earlier this month. Apparently he will join Arsenal in the summer.
Although it was Mislintat who came up with the idea of signing Pepe, Monchi “also favours a move for the 23-year-old”.
He has yet to make his first start for Arsenal but Spanish winger Denis Suarez is already being lined up for a full-time move to the Emirates at the end of the season, reports Metro.
The 25-year-old, whose four appearances for Arsenal have come from the bench, was loaned to the north London outfit by Barcelona in the January transfer window. But according to the Spanish outlet Marca, the two clubs “agreed a fee of £17.3m prior to Suarez’s loan arrival”.
However, that is only if the Gunners believe he can fit into their long-term plans. The interest in Pepe suggests that Emery may have already decided against making the move permanent.