Date: 11th June 2016 at 9:53pm
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Surprise reports in Spain have linked right-back Cedric Soares with a move to Catalan giants Barcelona.

Surprise reports in Spain have linked right-back Cedric Soares with a move to Catalan giants Barcelona.

Football Espana have claimed that Barcelona scouts were in attendance as Portugal beat Estonia 7-0 in a friendly match and Cedric was one of three players (alongside Raphael Guerreiro and Andre Gomes) they were watching.

With Dani Alves having ended an 8-year stay at the club, the 5-time European Cup winners are in the market for another right-back. Aleix Vidal was signed last summer from Sevilla as the replacement for Alves but ended the season as fourth choice in that position behind the Brazilian, midfielder Sergi Roberto and even flop Douglas.

Barcelona were interested in Cedric last year before he joined Southampton but cooled their interest when Vidal joined and Alves signed a one-year contract extension.

Cedric has had a mixed debut season at Southampton. Signed for £3.5m from Sporting Lisbon last summer as the replacement for Nathaniel Clyne, the Portuguese international has struggled to find consistency. Curacao defender Cuco Martina replaced Cedric as first choice during the final few weeks of the season with the Portuguese playing just twice since the defeat to Bournemouth at the beginning of March.

In 24 games, Cedric failed to find the back of the net whilst assisting teammates on two occasions. According to Squawka, he made 96 clearances, 54 interceptions and 11 blocks throughout the course of the season. He made zero defensive errors in the games he played. In each of these areas he comes out top ahead of Martina, Alves, Vidal and Roberto in league games during the 2015/16 season.

Compared to the likes of Douglas and Keirrison, Cedric would not be the most bizarre signing in Barcelona`s history. It does however seem odd that one of the world`s biggest clubs would be willing to replace one of their greatest ever right-backs with someone who is yet to impress in one of Europe`s biggest leagues. Cedric may yet develop into a top footballer, but at the moment he does not appear to be the sort of player that will excite the Barcelona fans.

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