Nicolas Pepe arrived at Arsenal in 2019 as the club’s most expensive signing in history, but in 2023, he is leaving without making a significant impact and at no additional cost to the English team. Arsenal announced that both the club and the player have agreed to terminate the contract, which originally ran until June 2024. Now, the 28-year-old Ivorian forward is transferring to Trabzonspor, the Turkish champions of the 2021/22 season.
Pepe was brought to Arsenal in 2019 after impressing at Lille. The London club paid €80 million to acquire him, including fixed and variable fees. At that time, he became Arsenal’s most expensive signing in history until the arrival of Declan Rice earlier this year, with a transfer fee of £105 million.
However, Pepe’s performance did not meet expectations. In his last season at Lille, he scored 24 goals and provided 11 assists in 48 games. In total, during his time at Arsenal, Nicolas Pepe managed to score only 27 goals and provide 22 assists in 112 matches. In the 2022/23 season, he was loaned to Nice, where he scored eight goals in 28 games.
During his tenure at Arsenal, Pepe contributed to winning the FA Cup in the 2019/20 season, with an assist in the final against Chelsea. In the farewell message, the club, under the leadership of Mikel Arteta, thanked the forward for his “contribution” and wished him good luck in his future career.
Trabzonspor, the Turkish champions of the 2021/22 season, finished sixth in the previous season and will only participate in domestic competitions in the 2023/24 season.
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