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What Nicolas Pepe did to Willian in Arsenal training ahead of Crystal Palace clash

Nicolas Pepe was one of the standout players in Arsenal’s final training session ahead of facing Crystal Palace.

The 25-year-old is pushing for inclusion in Mikel Arteta’s starting XI for Thursday night’s Premier League clash at the Emirates Stadium and has done his chances no harm.

With that said, Pepe does have strong competition for a place on the right-hand side.

And Arteta could have a full-strength squad to choose from against Palace with Gabriel Magalhaes and Thomas Partey both taking part in Wednesday’s training session.

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Ahead of the game at the Emirates Stadium the likes of Alexandre Lacazette, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Gabriel Martinelli, and Kieran Tierney were also put through their paces at the club’s London Colney training base.

And there was a moment where Pepe served a timely reminder of his quality.

As spotted in a behind the scenes of Arsenal ‘s training session video uploaded to YouTube, it’s bibs vs non-bibs with the £72m record signing on the latter team.

At around the 5.22-minute mark, Pepe receives a pass from Granit Xhaka but his route to goal is immediately closed off by the combination of Joe Willock and Willian.

Not to worry, with excellent ball retention skills and quick feet, the winger manages to evade both players before curling the ball into the bottom corner with his left foot.

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The solo goal wasn’t too dissimilar to the one Pepe scored in the 2-1 win over Sheffield United at the start of the season.

That remains one of two goals to the Ivory Coast international’s name in the Premier League so far this term, with his last goal coming in the 2-1 loss against Everton last month.

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