Four different ways Arsenal can line up in 2019/20 with record signing Nicolas Pepe

Nicolas Pepe is Arsenal's new record signing

Arsenal have completed the signing of Nicolas Pepe from Lille.

The Ivorian winger has signed a five-year deal at the Emirates and is the club's new record signing at around £72m.

Arsenal will pay the transfer fee in instalments to suit their budget in what is turning out to be a very exciting window for Gunners fans.

A few weeks back, there was genuine fear that the club had lost their mojo in the transfer market and were resorting to simply penny-pinching for below-par players.

Now, they've signed one of the most sought-after players in world football, beating the likes of Napoli to his signature - clubs that could offer Champions League football.

Pepe arrives with a stellar reputation, a goal scorer, a creator and a lightning quick athlete capable of skinning opposing full-backs for fun.

The 24-year-old also brings versatility to the Gunners. He can operate as a wide-midfielder tasked with defending as well as attacking, an out-and-out winger and as a centre-forward.

As such, Unai Emery will be able to construct various different lineups with Pepe in the squad, ones that aren't as heavily reliant on Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette.


Arsenal's strongest XI

A team that looks capable of breaking back into the top four, on paper.

Pepe and Aubameyang out wide will have to contribute defensively, as well as drifting inside to support Lacazette.

But the thought of Mesut Ozil in the middle of the park picking out passes for that trio in front of him is simply mouthwatering. Watch out, Premier League defences.


Counter-attacking machine

If Aubameyang and Pepe need more freedom to attack, Emery can switch to a 4-3-3 to give the team a tad more balance.

Pepe will operate closer to Lacazette as an out-and-out winger, with Dani Ceballos or Granit Xhaka coming in to replace Ozil.

This system would be perfect for big away games.


The Gunners in a 4-4-2

Given Pepe's stunning form in front of goal in Ligue 1 last season - 22 goals in total - Emery may want to get him as close to goal possible.

Pairing him next to either Aubameyang or Lacazette in a front two would be deadly, especially against teams with leaky defences.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Alex Iwobi and Reiss Nelson would be the candidates to occupy the wide positions.

4. 4-3-3 (AUBA & LACA RESTED)

Aubameyang and Lacazette rested

One thing that was apparent in 2018/19 was just how reliant Arsenal were on their dynamic striking duo.

If they were fatigued or not at the peak of their powers, the Gunners rarely performed. With Pepe, they have a new option that can fill the void if the pair are on the treatment table or in need of rest.

The Ivorian would take the central striking role, flanked by the likes of Iwobi, Mkhitaryan and Nelson.

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