Fulham are starting to look at alternatives to Cedric Soares in case they fail to agree personal terms with the Arsenal right-back.
The Daily Mail report that Fulham are exploring right-back alternatives to their primary transfer target Cedric Soares, looking at the likes of Norwich City defender Max Aarons, Millwall’s Danny McNamara, and Luton’s James Bree.
Marco Silva is keen to add a right-back to his squad, but unwilling to pay over the odds to do so. As it stands, Cedric’s wage demands are proving problematic.
This echoes recent claims from the Evening Standard, who wrote that Fulham’s move for Cedric was being held up by his wages. The player is currently earning around £65,000-a-week and Fulham are reluctant to match that.
Cedric was left out of Arsenal’s squad against Newcastle United last week, in what seemed to be an indication that his exit is growing near – either on a permanent deal or a loan with an obligation to buy.
If Fulham decide to look elsewhere, Cedric is also a target for Atletico Madrid and Bayer Leverkusen.
All three clubs have been in contact with Cedric’s representatives, but Fulham still currently lead the race.
Then there’s always the possibility Cedric stays at Arsenal until the end of the season. Last month, reports suggested the Gunners hadn’t even decided if they’ll allow Cedric to leave.
Mikel Arteta has Takehiro Tomiyasu and Ben White, but with Tomiyasu’s injury record, it’s not unlikely that Cedric might be needed when the fixture list gets busier again.
All in all, it’s hard to see who has the upper hand in these negotiations.
Fulham are desperate for a right-back, but they have alternative options. Arsenal could be willing to sell, but Fulham aren’t the only buyer, and the Gunners would probably be happy to wait until summer.
At the moment, talks could seemingly end up anywhere.