Arsenal investigating Nicolas Pepe transfer, thinking they may have overpaid
£72 million is a lot of money
Arsenal are reportedly carrying out an internal investigation into their signing of Nicolas Pepe last summer, according to ESPN.
The club deny this but ESPN claim multiple sources have told them the club feel they have overpaid for the winger and are looking into the matter as part of the overhaul of their recruitment department, which saw the long-serving Francis Cagigao leave after more than 20 years, as well as several more junior scouts.
It is understood that Arsenal have no regrets over signing Pepe, who moved from Lille in 2019 and registered eight goals and 10 assists in all competitions during his first year in England, but the club feel they overpaid for him.
Arsenal paid Lille an initial £20m, agreeing to pay the remaining £52m over five instalments - a payment structure which persuaded Arsenal to move for Pepe rather than Crystal Palace's Wilfried Zaha, which would have required Arsenal to pay a similar fee in one transaction.
It has been reported that the length and depth of the commitment to paying Pepe's £72m fee has led to the club reevaluating how they go about negotiating such big transfers.
This overhaul in strategy is just one aspect of big changes at Arsenal, after the club announced 55 redundancies would be made to mitigate financial troubles caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
The club cited investment in the first team as the primary reason behind the job cuts, but that did not soften the blow for fans, who voiced their outrage when the news broke.
Arsenal announced their first signing of the window on Friday morning, as Willian arrived on a free transfer from Chelsea. It has been reported but not confirmed that the winger would receive a signing on fee of up to £10m. The 32-year-old joins Arsenal on a three-year contract. And that's good business, is it?