Cedric Soares made more than 100 appearances for Saints

Arsenal have signed Portuguese defender Cedric Soares on loan from Southampton until the end of the season.

The 28-year-old has made more than 100 appearances since joining the Saints in 2015.

Cedric has also made 33 appearances for his country, including featuring at the 2018 World Cup and in Portugal’s victorious Euro 2016 campaign.

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta said: “He knows the league and he doesn’t really need to adapt so I’m very pleased.”

“We were short at right-back, we’ve had some big issues in that position before. We only have two players there and Maitland-Niles isn’t really a right back and Hector [Bellerin] has had injuries so to bring in a player of that quality wasn’t easy.”

Arsenal’s technical director Edu said Cedric would “provide our squad with quality”.

Edu added: “I know he is a player who plays with absolute full commitment and energy. We are all looking forward to going into the last stages of the season with Cedric as part of the club.”

Cedric, who started his career with Sporting Lisbon, becomes Arsenal’s second addition to the squad during the January transfer window following the agreement of a loan deal for Flamengo defender Pablo Mari.

Meanwhile, Southampton’s Japan defender Maya Yoshida has joined Serie A side Sampdoria on loan for the rest of the season, with his Saints contract set to expire in the summer.

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