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Everton must avoid another Iwobi disaster after links to Nicolas Pepe

Everton could be on the verge of repeating their disastrous deal for Alex Iwobi after being linked with a transfer move for Arsenal winger Nicolas Pepe.

What’s the story?

According to French outlet Jeunes Footeux (as relayed by SportWitness), the Toffees are one of several Premier League clubs interested in securing the 26-year-old’s signature, with Newcastle United and Crystal Palace also listed as potential suitors.

The report claims that the trio are hoping to conclude a short-term loan move including an option to buy Pepe at the end of the season rather than a direct transfer given his recent struggles and that the Gunners may not have any other choice than to accept those terms.

Would Pepe be a good signing?

Yes, definitely!

Yes, definitely!

No way!

No way!

Marcel Brands must avoid

After arriving at Arsenal for a club-record £72m fee in the summer of 2019, Pepe has failed to live up to the expectations that his astronomical price tag understandably brought.

He made 31 Premier League appearances in his maiden campaign, featuring from the off on only 22 occasions and scoring just five goals along the way.

The Ivory Coast international did show shines of improvement last term, though. A healthy return of 16 goals and five assists in all competitions provided hope that Pepe could finally fulfil his potential, yet consistently impressive performances still eluded him.

One particularly frustrating display against Chelsea towards the end of 2020/21 earned criticism from BT Sport pundit Joe Cole, who lamented his work rate compared to teammate Bukayo Saka.

“He plays in fits and starts Pepe,” Cole said. “We’ve got a great angle up here and we were watching him, and he was so lacklustre. Compare him to Saka on the other side who was full of energy and was vibrant.

“Pepe was wandering, after 30 minutes we were questioning what he was on the pitch for, but he has got the quality and that’s why you pay £70m for him because he can do things like that. You just need to see it more often.”

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And it appears Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta was equally incensed with the versatile forward’s inconsistent showings.

In recent weeks, Pepe has found himself on the substitutes bench on a regular basis as the north London outfit have hit some good form, receiving just five minutes of top-flight action in their last three fixtures.

Therefore, it appears as though his days at the Emirates Stadium are numbered, but Everton’s hierarchy would be wise to stay away from the infuriating if talented £140,000-per-week Ivorian.

Marcel Brands has already been embarrassed by Arsenal in two previous transfer dealings with the capital club, first when he paid £20m for an ageing Theo Walcott, and then when he splashed big money to bring Iwobi to Goodison Park.

The two wingers both failed to have the desired impact following their switch to Merseyside, and Brands must avoid making the same mistake for a third time in just three years.

And, in other news…Signed for £7.1m, sold for £30m: Brands pulled off EFC masterclass with 32 y/o monster

Article title: Everton must avoid another Iwobi disaster after links to Nicolas Pepe

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