Arsenal hero compares Newcastle United target to French legend Papin

Marseille Velodrome

Andre-Pierre Gignac is a long-term target for Newcastle United, and Robert Pires

It has been reported today that Marseille striker Andre-Pierre Gignac has had a very heated bust-up with his club manager Elie Baup.

The French international was dropped to the bench for the crunch Ligue 1 tie with Paris Saint-Germain recently, and it is said he has gone into the international break in quite a hump with his current club.

It is likely music to the ears of all Newcastle United fans and of course the under fire manager Alan Pardew.

They want to bring in one more striker to shore up the offensive options at St James Park. Gignac is the perfect fit, and would feel more than at home among international team-mates such as Loic Remy, Mathieu Debuchy and Yohan Cabaye.

And today, an Arsenal legend has been speaking about the striker.

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Robert Pires, who was voted the sixth greatest player in Arsenal history, has been speaking about the difficulty Gignac has been having with his club boss:

"There is a huge pressure [playing for Marseille] and also the ghosts of former players who still haunt the Velodrome. When you have a striker that happens, people will always compare, but this is not what to do. As Gignac has a style that resembles that of Jean-Pierre Papin, everyone is expecting him to make from 25 to 30 goals a season. Andre-Pierre Gignac has the profile to become a great number 9 to l'OM . He must be convinced that he is number 1.’’

So he has the seal of approval from a Premier League legend. Whether Newcastle United can convince him that there would be less pressure on his shoulders at St James Park remains to be seen, but they have a few legendary strikers of their own that Gignac would have to follow in the footsteps of.

image: © T1o

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