Ivory Coast star Nicolas Pepe was impressive in Arsenal’s 3-0 win against Dundalk on Thursday night but he has been warned by former player Martin Keown that he risks getting the same treatment as Mesut Ozil if he does not get better with his consistency.
Mesut Ozil has been left out of Arsenal squad for all major competitions this season and that means he would be forced to leave with the January transfer window being considered to save his career.
The attitude and performance of the former Real Madrid playmaker are cited as the reason why manager Mikel Arteta continued to snub him from games before deciding to leave him out of the team after he refused to improve.
Martin Keown, reacting to Nicolas Pepe’s goal and performance in the Europa League game said “These are the moments from Pepe that we were expecting when he first arrived.”
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He lamented that the fans are yet to see enough of the former Lille player, adding that his best must be seen more often to be able to seal his place in the team.
Martin Keown noted that Mikel Arteta might have claimed to fail Mesut Ozil but such an excuse cannot be given of the Ivory Coast star because he has been given the opportunity but he has to get the best for himself.
“We’ve all talked about Ozil not being around and the manager saying he failed the player. What about Pepe now? We’re moving onto the next generation. How do you get the best from him, and is he getting the best for himself?”
However, manager Mikel Arteta has promised to help Nicolas Pepe and guide him towards consistency of performance.
The Spanish boss is encouraged by the fact that Nicolas Pepe is willing and he has hinted on helping him to be at his best every week.
The Ivory Coast international scored five league goals in his first season in England, against the 22 he scored in his final season with Lille.