This article forms part of our Last Time Out feature series, which is where Football Transfer Tavern takes a look at how a player fared against his team’s next opponent the last time the two sides faced off.
Given that he cost £72m, it is probably fair to say that Nicolas Pepe has not quite lived up to the hype yet.
In 23 Premier League games, Pepe has scored just four goals as his Arsenal side continue to struggle. One of those goals, though, came against today’s visitors West Ham in a match where supporters of the north London club arguably saw the best of the 24-year-old.
Furthermore, David Moyes should be worried about the threat Pepe poses and ready to devise a plan to stop him. Failing to do just that was Manuel Pellegrini’s downfall in the Hammers’ 3-1 defeat at the London Stadium back in December.
To go with his goal on the day, Pepe also managed to provide an assist, make one key pass and complete three dribbles — more than any player bar Granit Xhaka (also three). All of that resulted in Pepe earning Man of the Match on WhoScored with a 8.3 match rating.
Who would you rather have out wide?
Indeed, it was an impressive display by Pepe, who came in for a lot of praise from caretaker manager Freddie Ljungberg. Speaking after the game, the Arsenal legend said (via Football.London): “Today he [Pepe] worked hard defensively and offensively. He showed his quality and I’m so pleased for him.”
Play like that again, and it should be three points for the Gunners as they look to keep their slim Champions League hopes alive.
Arsenal fans, backing Pepe to deliver the goods against West Ham again? Let us know in the comment section below!
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