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Arsenal fans drool over Nicolas Pepe after summer signing nets first open play goal

All hail the arrival of the King. It may have taken until December and virtually half-way through the season, but Nicolas Pepe produced the kind of display that may just see his Arsenal career take off.

The Ivory Coast international arrived in a £72m deal from French side Lille in the summer, but his only goals to date for the Gunners have come from dead-ball situations – a penalty against Aston Villa and two free-kicks against Vitoria. But against West Ham on Monday night, the winger stepped up when it mattered.

Having seen Gabriel Martinelli equalise for the north London side after they had gone behind to a deflected effort, Pepe applied his trademark finish to give Arsenal the lead. The Ivorian cut on to his left foot and curled one into the top corner, before providing a sumptuous cross for Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to volley home. And after seeing him both score and provide an assist, Gunners fans flooded to Twitter to share their thoughts about the £72m man.

Many Arsenal fans were quick to suggest Pepe had silenced some of his critics, with some Manchester United supporters previously mocking him for being worse than Daniel James.

Having now broken that duck of not scoring from open play, the hope will be that Pepe has found some confidence to kick on with his fledgling career at Arsenal. The Gunners face Manchester City next up in the Premier League, and they will no doubt be looking to their Ivorian for some inspiration.

Meanwhile, Arsenal appointing this recently sacked manager would not be Unai Emery part two.

Article title: Arsenal fans drool over Nicolas Pepe after summer signing nets first open play goal

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