Former Arsenal striker Jeremie Aliadiere says the club made a mistake in spending £72m on Nicolas Pepe last summer, and that they might regret it.

“I’m not denying his talent,” Aliadiere told Goal.

“What I’m seeing, though, is the most expensive player in Arsenal’s history and even if you don’t want to think about the money, the fact is that money is, unfortunately, a big thing in football.

“And when you spend that much money on a player, you expect more goals and you expect more assists. For a player who cost £72m, it’s the simple parts of the game that sometimes I see him lacking.“

Former manager Unai Emery also once commented on the signing saying; “We needed time to succeed with our transition to a new Arsenal which is what I wanted. For example, Nicolas Pepe, who was the club’s choice, clearly needed time to adapt.”

Pepe’s patchy performances have led to plenty of criticism, with Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport even labeling him one of Europe’s four biggest flops of the season so far.

Meanwhile, Arsenal players have returned to training at their London Colney base as they prepare for the resumption of Premier League fixtures.

Players have been kept apart, and cannot mix as a group during sessions.


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