How Mikel Arteta can unleash the best of Nicolas Pepe at Arsenal. (1/n)
Pepe's problem can be broken down to positioning, off the ball movement and passing. (2/n)
One of Pepe's biggest problems has been his lack of goal threat in the opposition box. (3/n)
Under Unai Emery, Pepe was largely used in a withdrawn role and faced the same problem as those by Mkhitaryan under Emery in the previous season. (4/n)
In Emery's system, the right winger always played in an unconventional role and was asked to position himself in the midfield during buildup play. (5/n)
This positioning problem was largely due to the then Arsenal squad structure as Emery tried to balance Aubameyang and Lacazette in the same eleven. (6/n)
Under Arteta, there has been an overload on the left flank. Saka isn't a natural left back and Arteta pushes him up front to ensure he isn't exposed defensively. (7/n)
The overload on the left has to be naturally balanced by a more conservative positioning on the right flank to prevent quick counter attacks. (8/n)
Mesut Ozil has been one of the biggest gainers under Mikel Arteta as he finds himself back in the squad and playing eleven. (9/n)
With an overload on the left, Ozil has shown a tendency to drift on the right flank both with the ball and without the ball. (10/n)
One would assume that this should be an advantage for Pepe as he can now push inside with both Ozil and a right back behind him. (11/n)
However this hasn't translated on the pitch. Ozil drifts on the right flank but doesn't maintain his position long enough to allow Pepe a chance to make a run. (12/n)
When Mesut turns inside on the right flank, the central midfielder marking him also moves inside thus reducing the space for Pepe to run into. (13/n)
It isn't Nicolas Pepe's fault that his form has dipped. It isn't Nicolas Pepe who is struggling to adapt to the style of football in England but Arsenal that is struggling to adapt to their most expensive signing. (14/n)
There are few simple changes that can be done to help Nicolas Pepe. With Aubameyang and Lacazette's future at the club uncertain, we must aim to build the side around Nicolas Pepe. (15/n)
Pepe's strengths include running at defenders, dribbling and shooting at goal from inside the box. (16/n)
When in possession, Arsenal need to ensure that Ozil holds his position on the right flank for a longer period of time if he drifts there else he should not be doing it. (17/n)
If Mesut Ozil or anyone playing at CAM holds their position then it will leave more space for Pepe to run into and lesser opposition bodies to face against. (18/n)
To be more effective Nicolas Pepe needs to start making runs towards the edge of the box or inside the box. (19/n)
The left footed Pepe can then decide to setup someone else from outside the box or continue his run and set himself for a shot at goal. (20/n)
If Arsenal fans and their manager want Nicolas Pepe to step up then they must trust him and give the resources he needs. (21/n)
Either Bellerin or Soares (whoever plays at right back) should always provide cover for him to prevent quick over turn in possession. (22/n)
Another possibility could be Arsenal creating an overload on the right flank just the way they do it on the left flank now to push Nicolas Pepe ahead. (23/n)
The attacking full back would push the opposition defenders behind leaving space and time for Pepe on the flank. This would leave more passing options and space for Pepe to run into. (24/n)
It is impossible that every strategy devised on paper will translate on the field but these few small changes can help Nicolas Pepe settle at the Emirates and lead Arsenal to a new era under Mikel Arteta. (n/n)
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