Nicolas Pepe ‘frustrated’ with Arsenal situation under Mikel Arteta

Nicolas Pepe says he is unhappy with his lack of minutes at Arsenal
Nicolas Pepe says he is unhappy with his lack of minutes at Arsenal (AMA/Getty Images)

Nicolas Pepe admits he is frustrated with his lack of playing time at Arsenal this season.

The 25-year-old has showed flashes of his talent since his club-record £72 million move from Lille last year but has struggled to secure a regular role under Mikel Arteta.

Pepe has started just one Premier League game this season and was given just 25 minutes to make an impact in Arsenal’s 3-0 defeat to Aston Villa on Sunday evening.

The Ivory Coast international says he is unhappy with his lack of minutes at Arsenal and has revealed that Arteta is keen for him to show more concentration during matches.

‘My goal is to play more. Have a little more playing time,’ Pepe told Canal Plus.

‘A player who plays is happy. For me, I would like to play a little more to find a smile again.

Nicolas Pepe has started just one game in the Premier league for Arsenal this season
Nicolas Pepe has started just one game in the Premier league for Arsenal this season (Getty)

‘He [Arteta] wants me to be 100 per cent focused during the 90 minutes of the match.

‘Afterwards, I see during training that I will be a substitute the following weekend. But the coach speaks to me, he also has assistants who are there for that.

‘But it is frustrating for any player to be on the bench.’

Pepe also admits he does not want to see his role reduced to being just an impact substitute for Arsenal.

‘The coach makes his choices,’ said Pepe. ‘It’s up to me to show him that I don’t have that role.’

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