Leeds United

Leeds United: McGilligan reports Pepe could sign for club

Image for Leeds United: McGilligan reports Pepe could sign for club

According to journalist Connor McGilligan, Leeds United could be looking to sign Arsenal outcast Nicolas Pepe this summer for a hugely discounted price of around £20 million. 

The Whites have been impressive so far this window after losing both Kalvin Phillips and Raphinha by bringing in the likes of Marc Roca, Luis Sinisterra, Tyler Adams, Rasmus Kristensen, and Brenden Aaronson.

While they are still battling for Charles De Ketelaere with AC Milan, it looks like they could be in for another attacking player in Pepe from Arsenal, which McGilligan believes could be an interesting signing due to his relationship with the previous manager Marcelo Bielsa.

He said on the One Leeds Fan Channel, “Leeds reportedly wants Nicolas Pepe from Arsenal. Now I saw this yesterday, I saw that apparently, he’s willing to take a pay cut. I saw Leeds United could wrap him up for £20 million which when he was bought for what £70 to £82 million is absolutely mental.

“But yeah, I mean, he was a massive factor under Marcela Bielsa wasn’t he. He and Bielsa had that sort of loving where you know, Bielsa made it he was one of his modern examples wasn’t he of players that Bielsa developed and improved and Nicolas Pepe spoke glowingly about Bielsa before and so yeah, that is an interesting one.” (3:39)

TIF Thoughts on Pepe to Leeds…

Despite all their signings so far, the Yorkshire club could use some more attacking output ahead of next season as they only have Jack Harrison, Dan James, and Joe Gelhardt as natural wingers in the squad. 

Last season Pepe didn’t feature much under Mikel Arteta as he only made 23 appearances with three goals and six assists in all competitions but did average 1.6 shots, one key pass, and 1.1 dribbles with 82.6% passing accuracy. (Whoscored)

Also, according to Fbref, the Ivorian impressively ranked in the 98th percentile for touches in the attacking penalty area, 91st for non-penalty expected goals and 90th for both dribbles completed and progressive passes received compared to other attacking midfielders and wingers across Europe’s top five leagues.

Bringing in a player with Pepe’s potential and the ability for around £20 million when only a few seasons ago he was worth over £70m would be a coup for Leeds. While there is no guarantee he will reach the level he did at Lille, taking a punt on that kind of fee is not a huge gamble.

Will Leeds sign Pepe?





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