The north London club contacted the Ivory Coast international’s agents after he hit 13 goals in Ligue Un last season. Prior to that, he failed to impress at Angers and Orleans on loan: 10 goals in a mix of 69 substitute and starting appearances.
Ligue Un is more to his liking as he added a goal to his total along with an assist, during the opening day win over Rennes. He added a hat-trick in this afternoon’s 3 – 2 win at Amiens, as well as two more assists against Strasbourg.
The Gunners face stiff competition for his signature with a number of Europe’s elite tracking the striker who is adept at playing the wide role, as well as centrally.
Pepe is valued at £30m which may cause the deal to collapse before talks start in earnest. It is hoped the Premier League giants will make a move in the January transfer window. The Gunners transfer budget is restricted this season after spending over £100m last year.
Signing an Ivory Coast striker from Lille may cause a shiver down supporters spines. Gervinho arrived in 2011 with high hopes but ended up a frustrating mix of occasional moments of genius and tremendous mediocrity.