Arsenal make final transfer decision on Nicolas Pepe

Arsenal are understood to have held negotiations with Lille for Nicolas Pepe, although they have acknowledged that the attacker would be too expensive for their liking.

The Ivory Coast international has shone in the French top-flight this term with 20 goals and 11 assists and this has helped Lille close in on a Champions League spot for next season.

According to France Football via GFFN, the north London side have made contact with Lille regarding the availability of the winger, but they are unlikely to follow up their interest further.

Lille president Gerard Lopez has indicated in the past that the attacker would cost at least £68m during the summer and the Gunners seem unlikely to come close to this valuation regardless of their European status.

Arsenal are said to have planned a limited £45m budget for Emery this summer but the same could be enhanced with the departure of unwanted players from the existing squad.

Shkodran Mustafi, Mohamed Elneny and Henrikh Mkhitaryan are among the high-profile players tipped to head through the exit door when the transfer window reopens at the end of the season.

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