Wednesday, February 1, 2023

DEADLINE TRANSFER SAGA 中: Arsenal and Fulham Reach Agreement Over 31-Year-Old Star Defender

Cedric Soares has become the latest player to depart Arsenal on a busy transfer deadline day with his loan move to Fulham now complete.

Official confirmation of this deal came via both clubs’ websites as the 31-year-old has swapped north London for west London – until the end of the season – and is reunited with Marco Silva whom he played under at Sporting CP as well as former Gunners teammates Bernd Leno and Willian.

As previously reported by football.london, the terms of this agreement is a straight loan. This means there is no obligation or option to buy at the end of the season, but where Arsenal will mostly benefit from this deal is with Fulham covering the defender’s wages – which are estimated to be in the region of £100,000-per-week in full.

 

In addition to the north London outfit freeing up some money on the wage bill – even if it’s only for a few months – Cedric has the chance to play regularly having been behind Ben White and Takehiro Tomiyasu in the pecking order this season, and the Cottagers gain an experienced player who offers versatility in both full-back positions.

 

A combination of fitness issues and the form of White at right-back has limited the Portuguese defender to just four appearances across all competitions this season for the Gunners. However, he has received praise for his professional conduct off the pitch.

“The competition is one (reason), the second one is because he was injured for a while and he had a recurring injury,” Mikel Arteta told football.london when asked to explain his lack of game time. “Now he’s fit, and he’s a player who deserves to play. I want to give him the minutes because he deserves that.”

Provided he’s over the muscle problem that has kept him out of training in recent weeks, Cedric could make his Fulham debut as early as Friday night in the West London Derby against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.

It’s been a busy day for the Gunners thus far with Albert Sambi Lokonga, Nathan Butler Oyedeji, Omar Rekik and Marquinhos joining Crystal Palace, Accrington Stanley, Wigan Athletic and Norwich City on loan respectively whilst youngster Salah-Eddine Oulad M’hand has been recalled from his spell with Hull City.

Meanwhile, in terms of the Arsenal first-team squad, Arteta has bolstered his options in midfield with the signing of Jorginho from Chelsea to go along with deals for Leandro Trossard and Jakub Kiwior that were completed earlier in the window for a combined fee of £42million.

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