Soares: "I am training everyday and trying to cook something different sometimes. We are watching series on TV and cutting hair"
Thursday 23 April 2020 09:49, UK
Cedric Soares is being made to wait for his Arsenal debut - but is using the COVID-19 lockdown to learn new ways to cook, train his dog and even get his hair cut.
The Portugal international arrived at the Emirates on deadline day on loan from Southampton until the end of the season.
The defender was already carrying an injury after suffering ligament damage in his final appearance for Ralph Hasenhuttl's side.
Soares has used the lockdown to complete his recovery - and has learned to adapt his life to the challenges posed by the coronavirus pandemic, including putting his dog Romeu through his paces.
"I have my dog and my wife always keeping me busy. We are trying to teach him a few new things," said Soares, who named his pet after Southampton team-mate Oriol Romeu.
"The dog is very little and is only five months old. He already sits but we are trying to make him lie down.
"We're now trying to make him jump over things. It's difficult and it takes a bit of patience, you know.
"I am training everyday and trying to cook something different sometimes. We are watching series on TV and cutting hair.
"My brother is a good cook and he's often sending me stuff. I'm doing a few starters and desserts. We've tried chocolate - we can't eat too much, but a little bit every day is OK.
"We called my hairdresser on FaceTime to follow his guidance. Of course, it's not the same but my wife is doing a good job.
"I can't say it's perfect but it's cut in a good way."
Soares, 28, is still keeping in touch with his team-mates and posts his rigorous home workouts on social media.
He may not get a chance, though, to turn out for Arsenal in the event that the current season is declared null and void.
The Portuguese, who will have to wait another 12 months to defend the European Championships title he won in France in 2016, still retains hope that he'll be able to pull on the red and white shirt for a club he has always admired from afar.
"I wanted to be involved as soon as possible, but coronavirus is a world problem and I think as a country we are all responding very well together," he said.
"I'm very excited for my first game for Arsenal. It's a game of patience and I know it will happen in the near future.
"It's a club I always followed from afar. I remember Ian Wright, Thierry Henry, Robert Pires, Patrick Vieira and Dennis Bergkamp. Always when you think of Arsenal you think of these players as they were legends for the club."