Odegaard was called ‘Norwegian Messi’ and Pep promised to make him best in world
ARSENAL have included some much-needed creativity to their midfield – and a gamer a rival boss swore to make the finest in the world.
Martin Odegaard, 22, has signed up with the Gunners on a ₤ 1.8 million loan up until completion of the season from Real Madrid, after finding game time limited at the Bernabeu.
And the playmaker, once dubbed the ‘Norwegian Messi’, is not except admirers – with Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola believed to have been desperate to sign him when he handled Bayern Munich.
While during his time at Real Madrid, Cristiano Ronaldo was wowed by Odegaard’s left foot and guarantee.
International team-mate Erling Haaland has also revealed the joy he has playing for Norway with Odegaard being his chief supplier.
He was the wonderkid we had actually currently heard about at 14.
The buzz around Odegaard as a young teen was incredible.
Remarkably, he began training with the Stromsgodset first string aged simply 13 and made his launching in Norway’s leading flight at 15.
He was invited to train with the leading clubs around Europe, including boyhood club Liverpool, Bayern Munich and Manchester United.
In 2015, it was Real Madrid who had actually clinched an offer for the-then desired 16-year-old for a cost of around ₤ 2.3 million.
Norwegian football expert Jan Aage Fjortoft described why he selected the LaLiga giants.
He said: “As you understand, Liverpool was his favourite club, it was his favourite club as a kid. I still believe that the reason he ended up at Real Madrid was rather simple, in my opinion.
” First off, Real Madrid had a second team, the other three clubs did not. The junior varsity (Castilla) coach was Zinedine Zidane. He is not a bad player, he is not a bad coach!”
Guardiola wished to work with Odegaard at Bayern Munich, according to Fjortoft – who now works as a journalist in his homeland after starring on our coasts for Swindon, Middlesbrough, Sheffield United and Barnsley.
The Spanish employer was determined he might turn the No10 into a world beater, and told Fjortoft so.
Fjortoft said on the Here We Go podcast that Guardiola communicated to his board: “You have to bring that young boy (Odegaard) to Munich, you have to bring him to Munich! I will make him the best player on the planet!”
However, Pep lost out to Real Madrid, although then-Los Blancos manager Carlo Ancelotti wasn’t impressed by the excitement surrounding the kid wonder.
He alleged that the club’s president Florentino Perez just signed the skill as a PR workout.
” When Florentino buys a Norwegian footballer, you simply need to accept it,” Ancelotti composed in his book Quiet Leadership.
” Furthermore, the president chose that he would play 3 games with the very first group as a public relations exercise.”
After making his Real Madrid debut at 16, Odegaard discovered it hard to get into the first group.
In 2017, he was sent out on loan to Heerenveen – where he initially struggled to find his feet.
Nevertheless, when he scored his first goal in his 15th appearance there was no recalling and he grew from video game to video game with the Germans.
The following season, Odegaard went to Holland for a year-long loan to Vitesse Arnhem.
Transformed to playing on the right-wing, he scored 11 times and supplied 12 helps on his way to being voted the club’s player of the season for 2018-19.
Odegaard returned to Spain for the 2019-20 season with Real Sociedad, his 3rd loan in as lots of seasons.
And he starred in San Sebastian, scoring four times in 31 games – becoming a fans’ favourite with his dazzling death – chipping in with six assists too.
His form motivated Zidane to keep Odegaard around this season, but with just 9 appearances for the club (primarily from the bench) he grew annoyed by lack of first string opportunities.
Bucking the trend of the cynics, Cristiano Ronaldo had plenty of praise for Odegaard in an interview in 2015.
” You see lots of players with capacity. I will point out Martin Odegaard of Madrid for example, at 16 he’s still young however you can see he’s a great gamer,” he said.
” He’s an excellent player, I think he’s a young kid, he can still grow.
” He has a good future ahead. We should give him time to discover, to take his best decisions. However I see a great deal of potential in the gamer, he has actually got a great left foot.”
Odegaard, who has 25 caps for Norway, has actually likewise been applauded by Borussia Dortmund hot shot Erling Haaland as an all-star team mate.
Speaking after scoring 3 times in a 4-0 Nations League win for Norway over Romania, a video game in which Odegaard teed up Haaland twice, the intense striker had plenty of appreciation of his friend.
” Yes, I can simply split it (the hat-trick) in 2 (and show Odegaard). It’s nice to have fun with Odegaard,” he informed the Mail.
” It will only improve in the years to come. We are still young.”
Arsenal will be hoping Odegaard strikes the ground running and provides the quality his fellow players think he possesses.