Nicolas Pepe can be said to have taken time to make an impact in the Premier League since his big-money summer move from Lille to Arsenal in the summer, but to be fair, a lot of factors have to be put into consideration.
The 24-year-old moved to Arsenal from Lille in the summer as part of a deal worth £72million following a season in France where he scored 22 goals in Ligue 1. Until Monday, however, the Ivorian had failed to shine in England and his strike in the Gunners’ 3-1 win over West Ham United was his first goal from open play this season.
But, it has not been easy.
“Obviously it has been a little bit difficult to adapt, not only to a new league but to a new country and there is also the language barrier - which can sometimes get in the way of me speaking with my team-mates,” said Pepe.
“I tried to not put too much pressure on myself and I am trying to get rid of the pressure around me, which is also why I live with my parents.
“So in a way it is quite nice that I get to go home and sort of switch off from the outside world and football and spend time with my family. That does help in terms of not feeling too much pressure.”
Pepe has so far been used out wide by Arsenal, with his impressive performance on Monday night coming from out on the right. A beautiful curler that had his teammates join him in the celebration with excitement.
Will he bag another versus Manchester City on Sunday?