Arsenal learn of player they can use as transfer bait to seal deal for Bundesliga star

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Arsenal can use Cedric Soares as a makeweight for Bayer Leverkusen star Moussa Diaby with the Bundesliga club reportedly holding an interest in the Portuguese right-back. The Gunners are believed to be one of a host of Premier League clubs interested in a move for the Frenchman and could now hold the keys to unlock a deal for the winger. 

Diaby has attracted attention from a host of clubs across Europe after impressing during a three-year spell at Leverkusen. He has continued his good form this season, scoring eight goals in 22 appearances in all competitions and was unlucky to miss out on a place in the France squad for the World Cup after winning eight caps for the national team since making his debut in 2021. 

Arsenal were widely reported to be interested in a move for the 23-year-old over the summer with Mikel Arteta keen to add to his wide options. Newcastle are among the other clubs to have been credited with an interest but the Gunners may have gained the upper hand given Leverkusen’s interest in one of their own. 

ESPN reports that the German side are interested in signing Cedric in January as they look to strengthen in the full-back position. Fulham and Villarreal are also believed to be pushing for the 31-year-old’s signature, something Arsenal could use to their advantage. 

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The north London side could offer the Portuguese as bait for Diaby, giving Leverkusen the chance to beat their opposition and give Arteta the new winger that he craves. 

Cedric has been a solid performer for the Gunners since signing from Southampton in 2020 but has never been able to secure a place as a first-team regular. The defender has made 59 appearances in the two years since his arrival however many of these have come as a substitute. The game time has completely dried up this season as the club challenge for the Premier League title, seeing just 122 minutes of action across four matches. 

Arteta has suggested part of the reason for the defender’s lack of action is a recurring injury with the performances of others then blocking his way into the side. 

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“The competition is one (reason), the second one is because he was injured for a while and he had a recurring injury,” the Spaniard told football.london when asked why Cedric had not been playing more. “Now he’s fit, and he’s a player who deserves to play. I want to give him the minutes because he deserves that.”

Only time will tell whether or not Arsenal will utilise Leverkusen’s interest in Cedric to help bring down the price of Diaby should they decide to make a move but it is likely to be popular in the eyes of supporters. 



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