Southampton were reportedly left shocked by Arsenal’s January transfer window move for Cedric Soares, which could be worth £5million.
The Athletic report that Southampton and their boss Ralph Hassenhuttl were resigned to having to keep hold of the 28-year-old, who is currently out with a knee problem.
The defender was unavailable to make his debut at Burnley having been forced off injured in Southampton’s win over Crystal Palace earlier this month.
Gunners boss Mikel Arteta referred to it as a “little issue” and has welcomed the Portuguese player to The Emirates, saying “he fits our structure at the moment”.
Southampton were none the less surprised to offload Soares, who was loaned to Inter Milan last January, with the club fully expecting to see the player leave for free in the summer to a club abroad, or to a side lower down the ladder.
The report claims Southampton secured a loan fee for the player with Arsenal covering all his wages and any bonuses due in the remainder of his Saints contract, which is up in the summer. Apparently a package totalling £5m is what the Gunners have agreed to for his five-month loan.
Arteta will monitor his progress and the player will be hoping to win a permanent contract in the summer.
Cedric will now be looking to secure a long-term contract at Arsenal, with his spell on Southampton’s books over as his contract expires this summer.
Arteta though is sure Cedric will be useful addition to his squad.
“He knows the league, he has been competing here so he doesn’t really need to adapt so I’m very pleased,” added Arteta.
“We were short there, we’ve had some big issues in the past in that position because we only had two players there, one of who is not really a full back and Hector [Bellerin] has been injured in the long-term as well.
“To have the possibility to bring in a player in that position with that quality and experience right now wasn’t easy, but we’ve done it.”