Arsene Wenger has been handed serious warning over record signing Alexandre Lacazette, as former Gunners player Robert Pires believes the player could find it difficult to adapt to the Premier League in his first few months at Arsenal.
The striker moved to the Emirates Stadium from Lyon this month for a fee of £52.7million, making him the club’s most expensive player.
Lacazette scored on his debut in a 2-0 friendly win over Sydney FC, having hit 28 goals in 28 starts in Ligue 1 last season.
Former Arsenal player Roberto Pires, who enjoyed six-year spell at Arsenal from 2000 to 2006, believes the 26-year-old could find it as troublesome as he did to make the transition to England’s top flight.
Pires said: “I do think Lacazette will be a success. He is a good striker who has scored a lot of goals with Lyon. Of course, it will be difficult in the beginning because when you play in France and move to England it is not the same, it is very aggressive.
“Maybe he will need time to adapt, but everyone around him is important, especially the French connection.
“I remember my first game at Sunderland.
“Arsene said, ‘Robert, I know you are a bit upset because you want to play, but I prefer it if you are on the bench and you can watch the game, the fight and the tempo’. After 20 minutes sat on the bench I said to myself, ‘What are you doing here?!’ because it was very, very difficult.
“I remember one tackle from Patrick Vieira and I thought this football wasn’t for me. It was difficult and it is about how you adapt. Some people say that it is the same everywhere. It certainly is not.
“If you play in France, Spain or Italy, it is not the same football — especially when you play in England. Every game is very difficult.”
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