In difficulty on the side of Arsenal, the Ivorian international winger joined this Thursday evening OGC Nice in the form of a loan without option to buy. If he is only a temporary reinforcement, the Gym welcomed the news in the press release published on its official website: “OGC Nice and Arsenal have reached an agreement on the loan (without option to buy) of Nicolas Pépé. (…) In Nice, Pépé will evolve under the orders of Lucien Favre, within a club which expects his talent and his experience to pull the red and black group upwards.
A return to France which delights the Elephant with 34 selections (9 goals), after having shone in Ligue 1 under the jerseys of LOSC and Angers SCO: “I think that (the return to L1, editor’s note) will do me the greatest good. Then for this sporting project that Nice has which is very ambitious with promising young players. So I found that this project could suit me. A step back ? Not necessarily, of course we can say it like that. But for me, I come to have fun here in France with the confidence of the coach and the president. This is the main thing, to find confidence and the ground.
“I am ready to play against Marseille”
Still alongside his leaders, the 27-year-old striker has not stopped scrutinizing Ligue 1 despite his departure to the Premier League and considers himself already ready to return to France: “I continued to follow this championship and I saw that it really evolved, it became a little harder, as I often watch it. It’s up to me to raise my level to meet the challenge. Back to competition? Already, it will depend on the coach, I did the preparation with my former club Arsenal, I did all the pre-season and I had no injuries. I did the preparation matches, but I didn’t start the league matches. But I am ready to play against Marseille.
🔴 Live | Nicolas Pepe’s first words 🎙#OGCNice #IssaNissa https://t.co/A7XQxUk7zr
—OGC Nice (@ogcnice) August 26, 2022
Finally, when asked about his mixed time with the Gunners, the native of Mantes-la-Jolie remained optimistic to say the least and came out of it stronger: “There have been ups and downs. In my first season at Arsenal, I managed to win two titles, the FA Cup and the Community Shield. We failed the second season in the semi-final of the Europa League against Villarreal. Of course it was more complicated then, but I only remember the good things. (…) I have evolved as a player and as a person. I also played less, it showed me some things to manage, I had children also in England, so I gained experience. My time in England made me evolve. » It’s up to him to demonstrate his talent, and why not this weekend with the reception of OM.
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