Arsenal have allowed Ivory Coast international Nicolas Pepe to leave on loan. The club’s record transfer signing will move back to Ligue 1 and sign for Nice.
Having spent £72 million on the winger, Pepe arrived in England with high hopes, but has found his opportunities limited under Mikel Arteta at the Emirates.
With two years remaining on his Gunners contract, Arsenal have decided to let the player return to France and Nice will present an interesting offer to the Ivorian, with regular first-team football.
Pepe scored 27 goals in 112 games for Arsenal. Initially capturing the eye and endearing himself to the Arsenal faithful, Pepe looked set to fill an attacking void at the club. However, erratic form and a lack of confidence has cost the attacker the opportunity of becoming a club legend, and leave Arsenal wondering how they managed to spend so much money on a player who disappointed so often at the Emirates.
There is no option for a permanent transfer included in this deal, but Nice will pay the entire amount of Pepe’s salary for the year, believed to be around £125,000 per week.