Lille forward Nicolas Pepe is in London to undergo a medical and finalise personal terms ahead of a £72 million move to Arsenal, Sky Sports have confirmed.
The 24-year-old is expected to be announced as our latest signing later this week.
Pepe is coming off an incredible season in Ligue 1 where he scored 22 goals and recorded 11 assists in 38 appearances (37 starts) in helping Lille finish runners-up and qualify for this season’s Champions League.
However, he did have a very quiet showing at the African Cup of Nations in Egypt earlier this month. We won’t dwell on that though – he was probably distracted by offers made from several clubs during this transfer window.
It had previously been reported that our transfer budget was only £40-45 million this summer. Not only is Pepe set to cost us £72 million, but we have already landed William Saliba in a £27 million deal from Saint-Etienne, whom we have loaned back for the upcoming season.
Nicolas Pepe is set to become our fourth summer signing. As well as Saliba, we have also signed Brazilian forward Gabriel Martinelli, and Spanish international midfielder Dani Ceballos, on loan from Real Madrid.
This would be an excellent signing to improve on our attack. Alex Iwobi is more settled down the left wing these days whilst striker Alexandre Lacazette spent some time down the right wing last season, despite being more effective up front.
Unai Emery could certainly do with signing a new centre-back between now and the transfer window, which closes for English sides on Thursday 8 August.