Unai Emery says that the development of Fabinho at Liverpool is evidence that certain players can take time to adapt to the Premier League.
The Brazilian signed for the Mugsmashers last summer, but took some time to get used to English football, and the Arsenal boss revealed he was player he’d have liked to sign as he urged fans to be patient with club record arrival Nicolas Pepe.
The Ivorian hasn’t quite found his best form, and while anyone with common sense can understand it’s too early in his Gunners career to make definitive judgements, Emery reiterated his belief in the £72m man.
“We spent money with Pepe, but Pepe needs time to adapt to the Premier League,” he said ahead of Arsenal’s Europa League clash with Vitoria.
“For example, in France I loved a lot Fabinho. He was in Monaco and I wanted to sign him for Paris Saint-Germain.
“When I arrived here, also his name was on the table to achieve to sign him, but he signed for Liverpool.
“The first six months he didn’t play, it was adaptation, but now he is amazing and I want the same with Ceballos, with Pepe.
“We need patience, but Pepe is improving. On Monday, the key to win was with him. If he scores the first goal, it’s different.
“But it’s one process and I believe in him and I know we need time and patience.
“The supporters have patience, some more than others.”
Pepe is unlikely to start tonight’s encounter with the Portuguese side, but could feature from the bench to try and build his confidence with a goal from open play.