Arsenal winger Nicolas Pepe was paid a huge sum of money to agree to terminate his contract at the Emirates Stadium, according to reports.
The Gunners paid £72million to sign the forward from Lille in 2019 but he made only 43 Premier League starts and Arsenal have now agreed to terminate Pepe’s contract with a year remaining.
The Ivory Coast international, who spent last season on loan at Nice, has already secured a move to Turkey, signing for Trabzonspor.
Arsenal said in a statement on arsenal.com: “We can confirm that Nicolas Pepe is leaving the club. We have agreed with Nicolas to terminate his contract with immediate effect.
“Everyone at Arsenal thanks Nicolas for his contribution during his time with us and wish him well for the future.”
Pepe never found his feet at the Emirates Stadium and became an increasingly peripheral presence, starting his last Premier League game for the Gunners back in October 2021.
And now Football Insider are claiming that Arsenal had to pay a ‘high seven-figure sum’ to terminate Pepe’s contract at the club after he fell out of favour at the Premier League club.
Arsenal did not receive a transfer fee for his move to Trabzonspor and the player received a ‘huge payout’ but ‘it is believed Pepe will not get the entirety of the final nine-and-a-half months of his contract paid up’.
The Gunners are making room in their transfer budget after spending over £200m on summer transfers, including Declan Rice, Jurrien Timber and Kai Havertz.
And Rice is already proving to be a solid addition for Mikel Arteta’s side with the 24-year-old midfielder scoring Arsenal’s second goal as they beat Manchester United 3-1 before the international break.
Former Lioness Jill Scott reckons Rice is the “complete” midfielder and has revealed what she really likes about the former West Ham man.
“I’m a massive fan” Scott said on Channel 4. “I think he’s just the complete midfielder.
“If he’s playing higher up, he gets goals as we’ve seen for Arsenal and for England. But what I really like about him is the holding role he plays, the way he reads the game, the interceptions, the strong tackles.
“For players like [Jude] Bellingham, if you have him behind you, it just gives him a little bit more freedom to go and join in. But such a likeable guy and I actually think he could be a future England captain.”