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Arsenal agrees £72 million to sign Nicolas Pepe from Lile.

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Arsenal are confident of signing Nicolas Pepe from Lille after agreeing a £72m fee for the winger, according to Sky in Italy.

Lille president Gerard Lopez confirmed on Friday that Napoli had agreed a deal for the 24-year-old winger, but Arsenal appear to have trumped the Italian side by offering superior terms.

Pepe score 22 goals for the french side last season.

Napoli were willing to pay Pepe £3.6m per year, but with the Ivory Coast international seeking a £4.5m annual salary, Arsenal have made a stronger offer.

Lopez said on Friday: “We received offers that satisfy us economically from four big clubs. Napoli is one of these and has satisfied our request of 80 million. Now it will be up to the player to decide where to go, also based on the proposals that his agents received from the four companies.”

Arsenal’s focus had been on signing Wilfried Zaha from Crystal Palace for a similar fee, but Lille’s willingness to be paid in instalments appears to have caused the north London club to prioritise Pepe.

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