Pepe admits his confidence ‘must come back’

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Nicolas Pepe admits his Arsenal stats for the season don’t make for good reading and that his confidence has taken a hit in recent weeks.

The £72 million summer signing grabbed his first goal of the season from the penalty spot against Aston Villa but was out of sorts again in last night’s 1-1 draw with Manchester United at Old Trafford.

The winger has registered two assists in his eight appearances so far, but it’s fair to say he’s been upstaged in the last few weeks by 18-year-old Academy graduate Bukayo Saka.

On the plus side, he’s not worried and he’s promising he’ll adapt soon.

“It has not been easy, I must tell the truth,” Pepe told French radio station RMC.

“My stats have not been good enough or my usual performances, it is not the same as Lille or the Liverpool game earlier in the season.

“My confidence must come back. I am not very worried. People may be worried about my statistics but I am not.

“I have to keep working as the level here is different [and] so is the language.

“It is a new league for me and I must adapt quickly. But it won’t take very long.”

The worrying thing about Pepe’s form is that it started to dip when he went to the African Cup of Nations prior to moving to London. In his first couple of games, he seemed to play with a bit more freedom, his quick turns lighting up the Burnley game and his running causing Liverpool trouble. More recently, games have passed him by.

With Alex Lacazette out injured, Eddie Nketiah on loan and the new boy not firing on all cylinders we’ve become unsustainably reliant on the ruthlessness of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. It has to change and it has to change soon.

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Gunner pundit
Gunner pundit

When Xhaka gets dropped and we start playing a midfield of Gendouzi Cellabios and Ozil I think he will play a lot better. A new and better manager would be of help also.

Gunner pundit
Gunner pundit

I’m not sure how to spell the Spanish Geezers name.

C.B.
C.B.

Hard work to find out, though you could look at the team playing most matches, the official Arsenal website, use Google eg https://arseblog.news/2019/09/chambers-and-saka-start-ozil-not-in-squad-man-utd-v-arsenal-team-news/

I understand you may not have the time though.

PeteyB
PeteyB

Gotta get priorities sorted I suppose… Being the first to post is no doubt more important than accuracy of content, or insightfulness of comment.

Gervinho
Gervinho

Guendouzi, Torreira and Willock. Then we have a defensive midfielder, a box to box and a creative force. But more importantly we have fighting spirit and commitment.

Xhaka and Øzil have yet to prove their worth, if they want to be part of this team.

Ceballos is consistently inconsistant

Biscuit
Biscuit

Ceballos is consistently inconsistent?
How many games has he started for us???

AKM
AKM

“Ceballos is consistently inconsistent” – Love that, from someone calling himself Gervinho 🙂

loose_cannon
loose_cannon

Disagree on Ceballos, think he has fantastic quality and is certainly no more inconsistent than Willock. If we’re playing 433 I think it should be Torreira holding, and then two of Ceballos, Guendouzi and Willock at 8. We could even potentially have Guendouzi holding like against Burnley, though certainly not against the top sides.

Karmafrench
Karmafrench

I like ceballos but i don t understand why people want him as a starter. I don t understand how playing so much à guy who is gonna leave at end of the season could help us. He is not so much good than our current midfielders. He should be a back up.

For the second part i agree. We are not playing a good attacking football so that don t help Pepe. there is only one Auba.
And there is à huge drop of quality between premier league and ligue 1. Yesterday Pires ( he was co-comentator for french télévision ) said that he needed 6 month to addapt To premier league. He also Said to give him some time and he will shine ( He is on the training ground more than us so i trust him ).

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia
Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

Pepe has squandered a lot of balls. He hasn’t been shooting well. That has a lot more to do with confidence than the style of play.

Richard
Richard

That may be true but he also strikes fear into defenders with his movement and dribbling. Also, we can’t be certain what Emery asks him to play like. As we’ve seen so far he tends to ask players to do things they’re not suited for so I wouldn’t be surprised he’s about to ruin this gem of a player.

truj
truj

At least three upvotes from my heart. Because I want him so much to help and get back the Arsenal.

Fred
Fred

I really don’t think that that midfield has the legs/athleticism to compete in the premier league. Have to have one of torriera, or willock in there to cover the ground. I think a double pivot of guendouzi and torriera with willock/ceballos/maybe Ozil ahead is the way to go.

Red-Sky
Red-Sky

Guendouzi, Ceballos & Ozil.
Are you even watching those players? at least 2 of them have zero defensive awareness, and the third alone can’t hold the midfield.
blimey, when people are mad they write nonesense.

Frank
Frank

I actually disagree the Ceballos has no defensive awareness. I think people judge him because he’s a creative type player who’s not physically imposing but he actually gets stuck in on the defensive side of the game as well. His square passes along the defence on the other hand do worry me but these should be able to be coached out

Monkey knees
Monkey knees

Nonesense.

Martin
Martin

So now the eternal scapegoat is responsible for Pepe not funding his form yet? What abject nonsense

Stonebenge
Stonebenge

Definitely up for going without xhaka, I think emery is just waiting for him to be suspended so he doesnt have to make the call haha. I’d go with Willock Torreira base with ozil in front though personally.

Mintoes
Mintoes

If we’re plauing 3 in the midfield – guendouzi, Willock, Torreira. If we’re playing 4 add Ceballos. Simple.

BODMAS
BODMAS

Why with the Ozil obsession? He passed it bro. Move on. I will rather see Wilock there

Djo
Djo

He is class…you can see it.

Just have patience.

N10
N10

Aller mon gars, <>
That’s French for, pick yourself up, it’s your destiny!
We believe in you man.

N10
N10

It deleted the part between the quote marks <> : “prends-toi en main, c’est ton destin”

Aaron
Aaron

Well, I thought French was bloody simple for a moment there.

SheffieldGooner
SheffieldGooner

Moi aussi.

Martin Dufosse
Martin Dufosse

I’m seriously worried about Pepe. Why have we spent £72Million on him when we have Saka,Nelson and the really promising Martinelli?. Surely better spent on a couple of top defender’s or a quality holding player.?.
Only time will tell but I fear we’ve wasted a lot of Money here.??

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia
Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

Guys like Keown criticizing him and saying Saka is better on TV hasn’t helped. When Henry used to mildly criticize our players, we had a lot of fans saying bad things about him here. When Keown or Adams (British guys) say much worse, it is no news.

Vonnie
Vonnie

Keown is always ripping our players to shreds, he’s a total arsehole.

bob
bob

How can it be declared a waste of money when he’s only played a handful of games for us?? Christ, give the lad a season before casting sweeping judgements. That used to be the minimum required for an overseas signing to settle into this league. First season they are a bit crap, with flashes of quality, then second they get a chance to start making that quality consistent in games, as they have settled to the team and league. On top of that, our team is never consistently set up by the manager, so it must be doubly hard to find a good rhythm. For a direct player like Pepe, it’s going to look bad when it doesn’t come off, but eventually it will, and consistently, and he will be a huge asset for us.

The best way we can help him build the confidence necessary for that, is for us fans to relentlessly support and show him love. Don’t get on the lads back when he even himself admits his confidence is low, let’s build it up with him! Actually be supporters!!

Mintoes
Mintoes

True. Took Laca a full season to find his feet. Get off Pepe’s back and give the lad some encouragement- he’ll come good.

Monkey knees
Monkey knees

Nelson will never be good enough to be a starter at Arsenal.

Caligunner
Caligunner

Sure you thought before the season saka and martinelli was arguably play better than Pepe smh

HelderHughes
HelderHughes

Woo wee, sorry, off topic. Get good Pepe and all… But I’ve just finished listening to the arsecast. That was intense. And did make me think about what I am and what I want as a fan.

I think James, although making some good points, misses a clear distinction. If we were good tactically I could deal without the flair. If we won each game 1 – 0, looking tight at the back and assured in possession, fine by me.

But what we have is chaos, the tactics don’t ever really seem to work. The defence is looser than ever and the players seem undrilled. And we don’t have the fluent attacking football so we lose on both counts.

We also assume Auba will keep banging them in. He won’t. He’s in very good form but we’ve all seen him miss sitters. Or he could get injured for 6 months.

A bit like when we went on that winning run this time last year, we could all see us coming through each game by the skin of our teeth. Even this season a clear pen against Villa last minute, one last night, an easy chance missed by Watford last minute. And when lady luck leaves us, we are left with an ineffectual shambles that crumble like the end of last season.

It’s reductive to just look at our results and brush away the performances. We need to scrutinise why this team hasn’t played well in any aspect for over a year.

God is a Gooner
God is a Gooner

Spot on. It’s not that Emery is making mistakes that bothers me, that can happen. It’s that they’re the same ones every single week. It is pure chaos. We could easily be sitting in the relegation zone this season if not for a few penalties either way. We’ve not won a single league game convincingly going back to last season. How he can’t see this and hasn’t changed something, anything in the line-up beggars belief. The only logical conclusion is he is out of his depth at this club.

Steve
Steve

Give the guy time, he has to adapt to a whole new league, language and way of life

Dave M
Dave M

Give the guy a midfielder or two who have the legs to get up in support and still the nouse, speed and stamina to get back and stop us leaking on the break. I’d suggest a healthy dose of Willock and Guendouzi in those two more forward thinking midfield roles and pint or so of Torreira at DM; go easy on the Xhaka though. He’s been overly applied in North London dishes in recent times – much better suited to European Flavours…

Rich
Rich

Steve, Arseblog comments have now mirrored Le Grove, you’re not allowed to post anything sensible, reasonable or have an ounce of common sense or pragmatism embedded anywhere in your comments.

Please stick to bashing the manager, being unreasonable, and make sure your self entitlement shines through brightly.

You also must recognise that Brendan Rodgers is now the chosen one, and the longer Ozil sits in the stands, the more he becomes the answer to all our problems…

arseblog
Admin

“You’re not allowed to post anything sensible, reasonable or have an ounce of common sense or pragmatism embedded anywhere in your comments.”

This is stupid. There is a vast range of opinion, and there is nothing that’s not allowed apart from abuse/posts that contravene the rules. If there’s a heavy leaning in the comments towards criticism of Emery, perhaps think about why that might be.

Clue: it’s nothing to do with Arseblog, but representative of what people think.

James
James

One footed, inconsistent, goal tally last season heavily supplemented by penalties and playing in an inferior league. The new Gervinho. Wasn’t sure at all when we payed that amount of money for him, he’s not a £70m player. Saka is upstaging him. The kind of player you read about as the salvation to all your clubs woes in Match magazine because he had one good season somewhere and who is consigned to the dustbin of mediocrity the next. A Lamela If you will. A Gervinho. A Fred.

Maybe he’ll play better when we’ve got Bellerin to stretch the game on the right side a bit. Call me pessimistic but wouldn’t you love a £70m CB or DM at the moment and get by with a triad of Aubameyang, Saka, and either Ozil or one of the other youngsters until Lacazette is fit?

Short-sightedness again by Arsenal. Shiny new player in the shop window, lots of buzz, there you go £70million. Doesn’t matter whether the hype matches the player or whether it leaves us drastically exposed in another area.

Love the irony though, we complain that we don’t spend money and we complain when we do!

May the Lord strike me down if I’m wrong about Pepe but in 2 years time I’ll either feel vindicated or laugh at how off target I was.

Martin
Martin

Another toxic supporter with a typical knee jerk reaction

Vonnie
Vonnie

Best you start preparing for the wrath of the Lord, because Pepe is going to come good.

James
James

A plague of locusts on the day Pepe scores a hat trick in the Champions League final. I’ll know it was him.

Ausdrexler
Ausdrexler

Every new signing is a gamble. We dont buy the kid, he goes to Liverpool and shines, you be here complaining about the club not coughing up the $$ to get him.

Sean Strauss
Sean Strauss

Another one bites the dust…doo doo doo…

Leee
Leee

I hope the (Twitter) fans’ impatience doesn’t get to him. New language, new country, no pre-season plus Old Trafford, Spuds & Anfield in the opening fixtures. Already a goal and two assists, promising positions (will improve his shooting) and moments of dribbling brilliance scattered here and there.. Am I the only one not worried about Pepe?

Flavoured Rice

I’m just gonna blame Emery here. Starves him by playing a braindead midfield. You gotta feed your wingers. Even Messi would turn to shit under Emery. He’d be running back to his own box just for a sniff of the ball.

Give us back our football Emery. It takes years to build a successful club but only a season to destroy it. As Man Utd are learning… Pray we are not next.

backsakacrack
backsakacrack

You go up by stairs.. but down by the lift. A. Wenger

bob
bob

Watching Torreira being stuck up front as some sort of mini target man, whilst our main goal scorer tries to feed him crosses…. I have a feeling that if we got Messi, then Emery would feel inclined to stick him at CB. “Our defense needs improving and he’s a good player, plus he will be good at constantly playing it out from the back under pressure, what could go wrong” 😂

Reality check
Reality check

Torriera was suppose to man mark-Pogba, cutting the supply line to their very pacy forward and their brilliant young no10 Lingard. This was their worst game against us both Pogba and Lingaard imo.. Don’t think any of our other midfielders is capable do a defensive job like man-marking so it had to be Torriera. If that was a good tactic or not, that is up for debate..

loose_cannon
loose_cannon

The thing is, as poor as they have been, Emery’s tactics haven’t stopped Saka from shining. And it’s not like Pepe’s is being badly played out of position like Torreira. Yet he looked totally lost against United.

Flavoured Rice

Well, Saka by his own admission doesn’t understand Emery, so Freddie probably intentionally mistranslates the bosses “tactics”. Either that or the young man just does whatever he feels like as he has nothing to lose.

Thierry Walcott
Thierry Walcott

After the Burnley game, Emery (I know) played a RW as a RF in a front two in front of an awful diamond setup and so it’s no surprise his confidence took a dip… It is not entirely Pepe’s fault, at all! He’ll come good that for sure.

KingThroughBall
KingThroughBall

I’m almost afraid for him to learn the language because of the bipolar nature of a loud minority of our fanbase at times. The critiques can get pretty toxic. Dennis and Thierry didn’t set the ground alight immediately at Arsenal, it took them a little while. And I’m not saying he’s in their class(though I hope he eventually is), all I’m saying is give him the time we gave them.

Twatsloch
Twatsloch

He arrived injured so he has the double chore of overcoming not being match fit and adapting to the PL and that’s some task indeed. Hoping he comes round soon because we need some of his reported brilliance and creativity as right now we are lacking in several areas.

Red-Sky
Red-Sky

Sure, he can fluff all the shots crosses, miss an open goal even. That happens.
But what is not acceptable is the lack of effort.
When ever the ball goes behind him, he’s finished, no support, no intensity, no defending.
Meanwhile 18yo Saka is running his bollocks to the ground up and down the flank, supporting the midfield and LB. First to run back and first forward. This is a fairly basic demand in modern football.

Pakgooner
Pakgooner

Noticed this as well. The second he gets dispossessed or finds his man dribbling in his area, he makes little to no effort to atleast provide some physical presence. Even auba does his duties
Nonetheless I think we all want Pepe to succeed here because he has what it takes. His pace is blinding and he may seem a bit nimble but he has an explosive gear in him we’ve yet to see

Biscuit
Biscuit

Confidence has got nothing to do with it – when you are subject to a 72 million bid by a huge club who, for some reason believes you are the real deal both your confidence and ego should be through the roof.
No….
He doesn’t believe he is good enough to play for such a huge club as Arsenal – a big fish in a shitty little pond called Lille then suddenly outside his depth at Arsenal. I am just surprised that Emery has received so little criticism for signing such a donkey. Given our defensive incompetencies the money should have been spent on De Ligt….

PGunner
PGunner

One bad game and he’s a donkey? Whatever happened to nuance..the age we live in I suppose. Enjoy your black and white simplistic life, Biscuit.

Biscuit
Biscuit

Are you saying that its money well spent?
Especially when you consider our first team central defenders are Luiz, Sokratis and Mustafi – the terrible trio…
72 million could have bought De Ligt and a defence could have been improved drastically. I don’t remember anyone crying out for a right winger last season but I do seem to remember the defence being slammed practically every game.
Still everyone is entitled to their opinion….

Gordy
Gordy

Obviously Emery doesn’t want to play his world cup winner but someone in the team who can see the killer pass might help Pepe.

Chrispy
Chrispy

It’s the Emery effect. He sucks the confidence out of everyone, particularly the fans.

A Gorilla
A Gorilla

Please please just try Guendouzi and Torreira as a double pivot with 3 attacking mids ahead and Auba up front.
p.s. Pepe looks like a decent player, don’t be negatrons

Dave M
Dave M

For my vote just for using the term negatron: a decepticon that turns into the angriest man on the Internet… (shout out to Blogs…)

Forest gooner
Forest gooner

Emery relies on low cutbacks in the opponents penalty area. Think of last season’s games against Chelsea away, fulham away and Leicester home. Bellerin was leading assist table before his first injury last season.. but after the injury, we lost our most potent threat. Montreal had lost his pace and Kolasinach is well … you know. With Bellerin and Tierenny coming back, we might see the best of Emery. Let’s judge him after a couple of months.

Ilari
Ilari

Let’s give him time. Confidence makes all the difference. I remember Arsene saying that anxiety is our biggest enemy, in life and in football, and I couldn’t agree more. Pepe must feel anxious about all of this, 70m move, new country, new status as a player, etc.. Big players are great regardless of all of this, but many big players need a few months. Let’s see after Christmas, not that worried.

loose_cannon
loose_cannon

He’s a bit unfortunate, coming into a team low on confidence, with a manager as confused as Emery. He needs time to adapt but I’m not sure he’ll get a lot of it. Due to the emergence of a couple of talents, we’re unusually well stocked in the wide positions. And you suspect that if results stop going Emery’s way and Pepe isn’t performing, he could pay the price.

Der Kaiser
Der Kaiser

Pepe, like Serge Gnarby, has the talent! Continue working and he will come good.

Still think Emery changes team too much. Sometimes players need a run of gsmes to get resl form ( and understanding with team mates)