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Arsenal boss Emery calls for Pepe patience

‘We spent money with Pepe, but Pepe needs time to adapt to the Premier League’

25 October, 2019 — By Steve Barnett

Arsenal’s £72m signing Nicolas Pepe

GUNNERS gaffer Unai Emery is taking criticisms in his stride, but admits his side need to “get better” if they are going to achieve their goals this season.

The Spaniard says it’s “normal” to have “difficult moments” but insists that he has confidence in the club’s strategy and future objectives.

The fans might not share that confidence, however, after it was revealed this week that Emery’s first 47 games charge are slightly worse than predecessor Arsene Wenger’s last 47 games.

“We are in one point of view. The supporters’ point of view and their opinion, we need to accept that,” said Emery.

Arsenal host Crystal Palace on Sunday and will be looking to shake off the 1-0 defeat they suffered against Sheffield United last time out.

Reflecting on the result at Bramall Lane, Emery added: “We lost a very big opportunity in the Premier League to go third in the table. We are fifth and have the chance to build on that on Sunday. We have to get better.

“Our objective is clear on where we want to get. I am very confident in the players, in our job, in our work, in the club strategy and in our way.

“OK we lost on Monday and it was a bad moment. Twenty-four hours after I have struggled with the same feelings, but that is normal. That is my life.

“I have one friend who says to me, ‘go to train your town team Hondarribia and you don’t have that problem’.

“But I know this is my work. And also my work is to analyse, and to respond to the supporters.

“They are also waiting to see our strategy on how we can improve.

“We are playing for our supporters and my message is that we are going to carry on with patience.”

Meanwhile, Emery has called for supporters to also be patient with £72m signing Nicolas Pepe, drawing comparisons with a transfer target that got away and now wears the red of Liverpool.

“We spent money with Pepe, but Pepe needs time to adapt to the Premier League,” added Emery. “For example, in France I loved a lot Fabinho.

He was in Monaco and I wanted to sign him for Paris Saint-Germain.

“When I arrived here, also Fabinho’s name was on the table to sign him, but he went to Liverpool.

“The first six months he didn’t play, it was adaptation. But now he is amazing and I want the same with Pepe and Dani Ceballos.

“Pepe is improving.”

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