Nicolas Pepe, Arsenal 2020-21Getty

Struggling Pepe needs to deliver more for Arsenal after missing Tottenham defeat - Winterburn

Former Arsenal defender Nigel Winterburn believes Nicolas Pepe is struggling in England but the club's record signing can still improve and be more consistent with his performances.

The 25-year-old continued his punishment on Sunday after he was shown a straight red card for headbutting Leeds United's Ezgjan Alioski on November 22, which made him unavailable for the North London derby.

Mikel Arteta’s side fell to a 2-0 defeat at Tottenham Hotspur with the Gunners struggling to find the back of the net despite having more possession and more shots on goal.

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Pepe has returned just one goal in eight Premier League matches this season but it is a different case in the Uefa Europa League where he has contributed three goals and two assists in five outings.

Winterburn, who played as a left-back during his career at Arsenal, claims the former Lille talisman is not wreaking havoc to opposition defences often enough.

"With Nicolas Pepe, we’ve seen glimpses of what he can do, and I’d like to see more of it consistently. When you’re in those wide areas you need to deliver goals and opportunities, and he does do that,” Winterburn was quoted by FreeSuperTips.

“For me at the moment, Pepe is struggling to adapt. He’s a player that’s got wonderful ability on the ball and to beat players, I would just like to see it more consistently for Arsenal.

“Being a full-back myself, the one thing that you didn’t want in the opposition is a wide player that’s going to ask questions of you for 90 minutes. I don’t think Pepe’s asking enough questions, defensively, of the full-backs and wing backs that he comes up against. He’s playing too safe and is too static.”

Against Tottenham on Sunday, Willian was drafted to the right flank in Pepe’s absence but the former Premier League winner thinks the Ivory Coast international can do more to fight for a starting spot in Arteta’s squad.

"There is certainly talent there, but it is up to both the player and the team to draw that out of Nicolas Pepe,” he continued.

“We brought Willian into the squad as well and know he can play in a lot of positions, but usually he’s playing on the right side. So, Pepe may feel that he’s been pushed out of the team a little bit already.

"I look at the players mentally and try to work out what they’re thinking. Pepe came with a good reputation but was struggling to deliver on it.

“Then all of a sudden Willian has been given his position and now he can’t get much game time, it can’t be easy for him in that aspect. However, Pepe needs to deliver more, is the simple answer.”

Pepe will be expected to continue his fine Europa League run when Arsenal visit Dundalk for their final group fixture on Thursday.