Cedric Soares has backed compatriot Fabio Vieira to adapt to life in the Premier League and says the new midfielder’s courage and intelligence will count in his favour.
While the pace and physicality of English football is something the 22-year-old will definitely have to get used to, Cedric, drawing on his own experience as ‘not the tallest’, thinks the £45 million signing will, in time, get up to speed.
“I’m helping him to settle,” Cedric told ESPN. “Fabio is a very intelligent player from what I saw in Portugal. I never played with him but from what I saw, analysing games and watching his performances, he had a really good season.
“He has fantastic quality. He is a technical player with quality and ability. He has a lot of vision for the last pass as well. This quality that you look a lot for in the players, I think Fabio has got it. I am sure he will adapt quick, he is intelligent you know?
“When you are not physically the strongest, you need to be smart in the Premier League. I am sure he will adapt very well, I have no doubts. [The physicality of English football] is a big change, but me personally, I adapted quite well and I am not the tallest. With Fabio, first of all he has big courage to play. That one for me is a quality. Second one, I see him as a very intelligent player.
“Of course he is very young still, so I am sure he will grow in years in the Premier League. What is intense for him is maybe the rhythm of the Premier League will be much quicker than the rhythm of the league in Portugal. This is something he will have time to adapt, but you can’t change it.”
Having arrived out-of-the-blue and for big money, supporters are certainly eager to see what Vieira can do.
Unfortunately, having arrived with a foot injury he’s only just working his way back to fitness and faces a race against time to feature in the remaining pre-season friendlies against Chelsea and Sevilla.
Elsewhere, Eddie Nketiah has revealed he was assessing several options before committing his future to Arsenal.
The striker looked set to leave the club as his contract ticked down towards free agency but after a run of games at the tail-end of last season, he was convinced that Mikel Arteta would give him the game time he so craves.
“When you’re at that stage of your contract you consider all your options and just weigh it all up,” he told The Athletic.
“I wanted to wait until the end of the season and of course, I had a lot of offers. I sat down with my team and with the manager and my family and we felt like Arsenal was the best place.
“I’m really happy with my decision and I’m looking forward to the future.”
“When you get down to that stage of your contract you’re obviously going to have options and I sat down with my agent and family to go through them all.
“But Arsenal is a great club for me. I support the club and it’s a great project to be part of. I hope I can contribute to that in the future.”