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Unai Emery: 'Nicolas Pepe to Arsenal is not closed'

Emery: 'Pepe to Arsenal is not closed'
© Reuters
Arsenal boss Unai Emery denies that his club have already completed a deal for Lille attacker Nicolas Pepe.

Arsenal boss Unai Emery has played down suggestions that his club have already completed a deal for Lille attacker Nicolas Pepe.

The Gunners have been strongly linked with a move for the Ivory Coast international over the last few days.

Lille president Gerard Lopez has claimed that the 24-year-old is nearing a switch to the Emirates Stadium.

However, according to Emery, speaking after his team's 1-1 draw with Angers on Wednesday, a deal for the winger "is not closed".

"We are speaking about a lot of players, we want to select on players who can really help us, give us big performances and improve our squad," Emery told reporters.

"We have different options. This one at the moment is not closed, but he is one we are following. No deal is official now, and I will only speak in the next hours or days if it can be official for us.

"We are working on the possibilities to sign players. We signed [Dani] Ceballos, and we have a possibility with Pepe. We are looking for the possibility to improve, but only if we can take more steps in the squad."

Pepe scored 23 times and contributed 12 assists in 41 appearances for his Ligue 1 club last season.

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