Arsenal have been strongly linked with a move for AS Roma director Monchi in recent days, and reports suggest he’s already got his first two transfers lined up if he joins.

Football.London write that Monchi has ‘already laid the groundwork’ for two signings if he ends up becoming Arsenal’s new technical director, based on a couple of reports in France. Let’s have a look at both players.

1Nicolas Pepe

Lille's Ivorian forward Nicolas Pepe celebrates after scoring a goal during the French Cup round of 16 football match between Rennes and Lille on February 6, 2019 at the Roazhon Park in Rennes, northwestern France. (Photo by JEAN-FRANCOIS MONIER / AFP)
Lille’s Ivorian forward Nicolas Pepe celebrates after scoring a goal during the French Cup round of 16 football match between Rennes and Lille on February 6, 2019, at the Roazhon Park in Rennes, northwestern France. (Photo by JEAN-FRANCOIS MONIER / AFP)
  • Age: 23
  • Position: Right-Winger
  • Club: LOSC Lille
  • Contract until: 2022
  • Estimated transfer value: £36m

Le10Sport report that Arsenal are ‘well-positioned’ to bring Nicolas Pepe to Arsenal this summer. The Gunners are favourites to sign their long-term target under Monchi for a fee of around €50m, according to the claims.

Pepe has been in fantastic form for Lille this season, scoring 17 goals and providing 11 assists in just 29 matches. As a result, his team have made a surprising run up the table, only sitting behind PSG at it stands.

Still, the winger does polarise opinion a bit. Despite all his goals, his finishing is a bit inconsistent, and many of his efforts have come from penalties. Though he’s a strong passer and dribbler, Pepe’s crossing can also be wasteful, and he does tend to concede possession quite a lot. His defensive contribution also leaves something to be desired.

If he came to the Premier League and got 28 goal contributions for Arsenal in his first season, most fans probably wouldn’t care much about the deficiencies in his game. It’s certainly something to think about before spending €50m though.

Click ‘Next’ for the other player reportedly at the top of Monchi’s Arsenal shortlist

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Arsenal fan since a young age, now a season ticket holder who enjoys writing, tweeting and making videos about the Gunners.