Phillips: Leeds will target Arsenal star Pepe and get him to 'flip'

Kevin Phillips claims Leeds United could target Arsenal’s Nicolas Pepe when the two sides meet at The Emirates on Sunday. 

The former Sunderland striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, claimed that the Whites players may be in the ear of the Frenchman after his dismissal in the reverse fixture between the sides.

Pepe was sent off in the second half of November’s 0-0 draw at Elland Road after he headbutted Ezgjan Alioski though Leeds couldn’t take advantage of their extra man on that occasion.

Leeds face off against Arsenal on Sunday with Marcelo Bielsa’s men looking to improve on the result they achieved against the Gunners earlier in the season.

Ahead of this weekend’s game, Patrick Bamford told Leeds United’s official podcast that Alioski can’t wait to face Pepe again after their altercation earlier in the season.

When asked if Leeds would be trying to wind up the Arsenal attacker during Sunday’s game, Phillips admitted that he is unaware if that side of the game still exists.

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“I don’t know whether that goes on anymore really,” Phillips told Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs.

“It went on a lot when I played and you’d dig people out and wind them up because you knew they’d flip at some point. 

“Yeah, they definitely will [target Pepe], it’s all part of the game. As long as you do it within the rules, you can talk to them and get in their ear. 

“You saw what happened with Pepe in the reverse fixture.”

Leeds overtook Arsenal when they beat Crystal Palace 2-0 on Monday night with Bamford and Jack Harrison scoring the Whites’ goals.

Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal will be looking to get back to winning ways on Sunday after last weekend’s 1-0 loss away to Aston Villa.

In other Leeds United news, Phillips: These three brilliant players can catapult Leeds into Europe.