Arsenal are considering a late move for Southampton full-back Cedric Soares in the January transfer window, according to reports.
The Telegraph claim Arsenal are looking at a move for Cedric Soares to bolster Mikel Arteta’s defence. The player has less than six months left on his contract, and he already confirmed in November he doesn’t plan to extend, intending to take the ‘next step’ in his career.
As a result, Southampton know they can sell for a cut-price fee now, or lose him for free in the summer. Given their impressive recent form effectively securing their Premier League status already, they may see a sale as a better option.
Southampton are already looking at potential replacements, with Kyle Walker-Peters joining on loan from Tottenham Hotspur. They’re willing to accept under £6m for Soares as a result.
Soares mostly plays at right-back, making him a candidate to rotate with Hector Bellerín. Though Ainsley Maitland-Niles is doing a good job in that role, Arteta seems to see him in midfield. He explicitly stated after the Sheffield United match that Maitland-Niles is “not a full-back”.
Additionally, Soares played a few games at left-back last season. It’s not his favourite position, but he could add some cover there whilst Sead Kolašinac and Kieran Tierney are both out.
The biggest downside is that it looks like Soares is out too right now. After starting 12 consecutive Premier League games for Southampton, he picked up an injury in the most recent one. The suggestion is that he’ll spend three weeks on the sidelines.
That’s still going to see him back before Kieran Tierney. Plus, his right-back capabilities remain the central reason for the potential signing. It’s just something else to think about.