Mikel Arteta will start under-fire Arsenal man Nicolas Pepe in the side’s Europa League tie away to Molde tomorrow, according to Daily Mirror.
Pepe was sent-off in the team’s last game away to Leeds United for an off-the-ball clash with Ezgjan Alioski.
However, he’s set for an immediate return to action with the Spaniard set to pick the player for tomorrow’s clash due to his three-game domestic suspension.
An immediate return to the starting XI could well help the 6’0 Ivorian move on from his horror show at Elland Road. He possesses the quality to harm opposition defences, however, has not produced consistent displays in order to impress the former Manchester City coach.
Should Pepe start Thursday's Europa League game?
As a result, Pepe has been warming the bench in the English top-flight, starting just one game prior to last Sunday’s draw. It seems Willian has been preferred to the £72m man, but, with the experienced Brazilian proving to be something of a flop so far, Pepe still has time to displace the former Chelsea man.
One big difference between the two attackers is their ability on the ball in the final third. Whilst Willian is somewhat shy in terms of taking on his man, Pepe doesn’t lack any confidence and consistently dribbles at his full-back. It comes at the expense of him giving the ball away, however, you’d rather have a player who attempts to make something happen than not.
There’s no doubt Sunday cast huge clouds over Pepe’s future at the club. However, he’s about to receive a great opportunity to make things right, and you can bet he won’t get another if he fluffs this one.