Arsenal have agreed a deal with Lille to sign reported Liverpool target Nicolas Pepe, according to BBC journalist David Ornstein.
Gunners fans will know all about Ornstein as he’s widely regarded as one of the most trusted when it comes to Arsenal transfer news.
Arsenal have reached an agreement with Lille to sign Ivory Coast winger Nicolas Pepe for ~€80m, paid by instalments to fit #AFC budget. 5yr deal, agent agreement still needed but set to be closed in next 24/48hrs. Napoli also have agreement with #LOSC but agent rejected proposal
— David Ornstein (@bbcsport_david) July 27, 2019
The move actually makes a great deal of sense. Journalists surrounding Liverpool will say that the Reds were never in for Pepe, and he wouldn’t really have fit in well at Anfield.
The Ivorian star is a left-footed right-winger, and oozes enough ability to be good enough to start for almost every team in the Premier League.
But there’s no way he’d start over Mo Salah, and that’s probably why the Reds didn’t push harder for this one (if they were even in for him at all). It may also be the reason the AFCON star may have preferred a move elsewhere.
As per the BBC, Arsenal will pay £72million for Pepe in instalments over an unspecified timeline. It’s believed that Napoli also had an agreement with both club and player, but the winger’s agent rejected the deal.
If that’s the case then, speaking entirely about the player’s representatives, and not his ability, bullet dodged! I’m sure his first interview as an Arsenal player will be interesting.