Arsenal defender Cedric Soares claims he is proud after having fought to get to where he is, having previously been the ‘pretty boy’ during his younger years.
The Portuguese is probably showing his best form since joining the club from Southampton on an initial loan deal in January 2020, taking full advantage of Takehiro Tomiyasu’s injury to stake a claim for the first-team role for an extended period.
Even with the Japan international believed to be closing in on a return to action after his injury woes, argument could be made for Soares to retain his place in the side, a testament to his impressive form and work ethic, and he insists that he is proud at how he has earned everything he as got.
“I was a pretty boy in terms of everyone already knew me in the youth team,” he told the Standard. “I was the captain of the youth national team, captain of Sporting Lisbon’s [youth team].
“I was growing in this beautiful world and sometimes you need this shock. I came to the first team and I was 19 years old, in one season I played five or six games. It was a shock.
“I asked to go on loan, I went on loan. I fought for what I got, nobody gave me anything. I am very proud of it.”
Cedric has always been praised for his work ethic in training, which is even more impressive considering how frustrated many players can get when they’re not playing as regularly as they would have liked. These sorts of players can be incredibly profitable to keep around the squad, and his recent form is a real credit to him for all his hard work and his patience.