Arsenal are reportedly open to selling Nicolas Pepe in order to raise funds for other players.

Arsenal's French-born Ivorian midfielder Nicolas Pepe (L) is shown a red card by atch Referee Anthony Taylor (R) during the English Premier League football match between Leeds United and Arsenal at Elland Road in Leeds, northern England on November 22, 2020. (Photo by Paul ELLIS / POOL / AFP)
Arsenal’s French-born Ivorian midfielder Nicolas Pepe (L) is shown a red card by atch Referee Anthony Taylor (R) during the English Premier League football match between Leeds United and Arsenal at Elland Road in Leeds, northern England on November 22, 2020. (Photo by Paul ELLIS / POOL / AFP)

As I was looking at the players Mikel Arteta has opted to get rid of, either permanently or on loan, I thought to myself that the only reason Nicolas Pepe is still at the club is simply because Arsenal overpaid for him by so much that they weren’t willing to such a massive financial hit on him.

Unai Emery signed 12 players when he was Arsenal boss and, of those, only Kieran Tierney, Nicolas Pepe, Gabriel Martinelli and Bernd Leno remain at the club unsold or unloaned.

LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 23: Arsenal Unveil New Head Coach Unai Emery at Emirates Stadium on May 23, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND – MAY 23: Arsenal Unveil New Head Coach Unai Emery at Emirates Stadium on May 23, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images)

By the end of the summer, that number could be down to just two, although we should also see William Saliba return to Arsenal.

But, back to Pepe.

Nicolas Pepe left celebrates with team-mates after scoring their side s first goal of the game during the Premier League match at Selhurst Park, London. Picture date: Wednesday May 19, 2021. Copyright: Justin Setterfield
Nicolas Pepe left celebrates with team-mates after scoring their side s first goal of the game during the Premier League match at Selhurst Park, London. Picture date: Wednesday May 19, 2021. Copyright: Justin Setterfield

Pepe has played just five league minutes in the last three games and, after a run of starts at the beginning of the season, has started just one of the last six.

One goal and three assists has been his return from nine matches, averaging 73.5 minutes per match.

Arsenal are said to be willing to let Pepe go for around £25m but it’s worth noting that the price of £25m comes from the Daily Mail, who base their report on Football.London, who price him at £31.5m, the price he is currently valued at on Transfermarkt.

Pepe still has another two years left in his Arsenal deal and the club will certainly to be hoping to recoup some of the massive outlay they made for a player who, given long enough to prove himself, has not really progressed as we all would have hoped he might.

Arsenal v Norwich City Premier League Arsenal Manager Mikel Arteta gives instructions to Nicolas Pepe of Arsenal during the Premier League match at the Emirates Stadium, London Copyright: Paul Chesterton
Arsenal v Norwich City Premier League Arsenal Manager Mikel Arteta gives instructions to Nicolas Pepe of Arsenal during the Premier League match at the Emirates Stadium, London Copyright: Paul Chesterton

Cutting their losses might not be a bad idea, especially if Arsenal can replace him with a move effective player.

To date, Pepe has scored 25 goals in 98 appearances with 18 assists. In 19 fewer appearances (although 185 minutes more) for Lille, Pepe scored 37 and assisted 17.

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Writer. Feminist. Dreamer. Gooner. Owner of DailyCannon.com, writing about Arsenal since 2008. Sometimes found in the Guardian, Vice.com & elsewhere talking queer issues, politics & football. If in doubt, assume sarcasm.