Martin Keown: Nicolas Pepe is giving Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta a nice problem

Martin Keown has his say on Nicolas Pepe's form for Arsenal in recent games

Martin Keown
Ex-Arsenal defender Martin Keown (Photo: BT Sport)

Martin Keown believes that Nicolas Pepe is set to give Mikel Arteta a “nice problem” at Arsenal following his recent upturn in form.

The Ivory Coast international has made something of a slow start to life at The Emirates after having signed for the Gunners from Lille back in the summer of 2019.

Pepe has been in and out of the first team this season and he has only made seven starts in the top flight so far this term, but he now appears to be finding some consistent goal-scoring form.

The 25-year-old netted the opener in Arsenal’s 2-1 defeat by Wolves on Tuesday night and he has now scored seven goals and made three assists in all competitions this season.

Pepe will be hoping to push on and establish himself as a key player under Arteta in the coming weeks and months.

And former Arsenal defender Keown believes that Pepe’s upturn in form will give Arteta a positive selection headache in the coming weeks.

Speaking on BT Sport on Tuesday night, Keown said: “It sometimes takes time for players to settle into the Premier League.

“In the second season you expect more and he’s been a slow burner certainly, but now we’re seeing a little bit of form.”

Asked about Pepe’s form being a ‘nice’ problem for Arteta, Keown replied: “It certainly is because [Pierre-Emerick] Aubameyang can play out on that left-hand side.

“Gabriel Martinelli has also come back from injury so there’s some good options now for Arteta.”

Pepe will be hoping to feature when Arsenal travel to Aston Villa in the Premier League on Saturday.

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