Arteta “not surprised at all” that Odegaard is new Norway captain

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Mikel Arteta says he’s not surprised that Martin Odegaard has been handed the captain’s armband by Norway despite being only 22.

It was confirmed last week that the midfielder, on loan at Arsenal from Real Madrid since January, will succeed 31-year-old Stefan Johansen when he joins his compatriots for upcoming matches against Gibraltar, Turkey and Montenegro.

“We think Martin has lived a long life already in European football,” explained national team coach Stale Solbakken when asked about the decision. Several of his more experienced teammates praised the decision.

Ahead of Arsenal’s Europa League last-16 second-leg clash with Olympiacos, Arteta was asked for his thoughts.

“I’m not surprised after sharing some time with him now,” he said.

“I’m not surprised at all. He’s got this personality, he’s a really humble and easygoing guy but at the same time, he’s very, very professional and very dedicated. He leads by example, which normally a captain should do.”

Norway’s men’s team hasn’t qualified for a major tournament since Euro 2000 but expectations are rising that the new generation, spearheaded by Odegaard and Borussia Dortmund’s Dolph Lundgren re-gen Erling Haaland, could rectify that in the coming years.

Asked if Odegaard will benefit from the extra-responsibility, Arteta added: “I don’t know. That’s a question for him. I just can just answer to what I’ve seen so far. I don’t know him for five years.

“I don’t know how he reacts in many other scenarios but if I have to give an opinion right now, then it’s that he is more than prepared to take that role [of Norway captain]. I’ve been very positive and impressed with his human qualities as well.”

After scoring two important goals in a week, Odegaard’s stock at Arsenal is certainly on the rise. He’s already made 10 appearances, predominantly in the number 10 role, and has dovetailed well with fellow creatives, Bukayo Saka and Emile Smith Rowe.

Having looked very disjointed in attack in the first half of the season, the injection of technical quality in the final third has led to more encouraging joined-up performances by the Gunners.

“The plan was to have more options and to start to create relationships with players that, in our opinion, could play together,” said Arteta.

“We work together as a club to try to identify those talents, good players and intelligent players that can always play together.

“We have to find the right structure for them to maximise their potential and this is what we are trying to do and we will try to do that even more with some of the players that we have with the same qualities.”

The big question now is whether Arsenal can persuade Real Madrid to extend Odegaard’s loan for another year or even allow him to join us on a permanent deal. You get the sense that Arteta would love that.

“You have to see him in action, you have to see his character a little bit closer, on a daily basis,” he said.

“I think everybody has been really impressed with how quickly he has adapted. Professionally, how he is and how willing he has been since day one to try to engage with everybody at Colney and then also with the performances that he’s putting in as well.”

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William Brooks

Would absolutely love him to stay but think we may be a bit heartbroken come the summer , he’d improve Real alot. Fingers crossed we pull it off though.

Johnny 4 Hats

He is so parched.

Nacho de Montreal is tasty

“Send back Odegaard and keep Ceballos” Real Madrid president talking in the summer.

Kostas

Real do not need humble professionals. They want super star divas.

Or at least this is what I think they think.
🙂

Arsene's Smirk

Baaah! another thing to bump up Reals asking price…

gooner

Madrid are in no rush to ditch Modric Kroos and Casemiro. That has been the stumbling block for guys like Ø, Isco and Ceballos. Given Zidane fancies Valverde over these guys as well you can’t help but think another loan move is possible

Nainsley Aitland Miles

Modric will be 36 come the start of the new La Liga season.

A Different George

I apologize, but I feel it is necessary that someone say it: he’s 35 until then. That’s how it works.

A Different George

Isco played a lot; he’s hasn’t been blocked, he has fallen out of favour. Casemiro is a genuine 6, not an especially creative player. Kroos, the way he is used at Real, is Xabi Alonzo (or a really good Granit Xhaka). Modric has been the real barrier to Odegaard. It’s hard to displace a guy who has been named the best player in the world (deservedly or not). I don’t know why (or whether) Zidane doesn’t like Odegaard, but clearly Modric’s time is ending.

dom

worth a 30m bid? let’s hope zidane doesn’t fancy him

Var Will Solve The Problem

30m + 1 will surely do it!

Nacho de Montreal is tasty

Pépé 72M, Odegaard 30M?

Martin

Irrelevant comment as Pepe is now finding his best form. We haven’t yet seen enough of Odegaard to be certain he’s right for us but it looks promising. In any case how do you know the figure that Teal would want for him?

Martin

Real not Teal

Chuffy

In this day and age he’s worth about 50 million of anybody’s money. At 22, he’s well worth the punt. Trouble is, if he has a good Euros Madrid may decide to give him a year in the team to see if he comes good for them.

Chuffy

Not Euros because they’ve not qualified. If he has a food season.

Chuffy

FML food season? I’ll just stop.

Scott P

He’ll be a well-seasoned pro by the end of tonight’s dinner service. We might have competition to sign him from Gordon Ramsey.

C.B.

Get him overweight by eating too much, and get a better price for him?

Tomaury Bischfeld

What are they smoking at the Emirates? Vast quantities of herring to feed Martin Ødegaard.

A Different George

Herring has been legalised for medicinal use.

Samu

Lol they might pay us 90 mil for an overweight ø i mean look at Hazard

PeteyB

Norway didn’t qualify. His price will go up when he scores the Europa league winner, making us momentarily wealthier but ensuring that Real Madrid demand all our winnings…

Biggles

But that may well be a problem for us as there are clubs that can easily outbid us and offer more in the way of regular CL football, league trophies etc. RM aren’t stupid and if they see an opportunity to either a) saving shelling out a fortune for another player when they can utilise him in their team, or b) getting a lot of dosh for him in the summer by encouraging more clubs to bid, they’ll do it. He’s very talented and it’s daft to think that we’re the only ones to know that.

PeteyB

Totally. I think realistically our only chance of getting him is by making him happy and convincing him he wants to stay, irrespective of what others offer. Of course Real could be stubborn in such a scenario and not let him go. He is under contract to 2023 (so says Transfermarkt)
In any case I hope that come summer we are facing a difficult negotiation because he has been excellent. If he scored that EL final winning goal worst case scenario is he leaves a legend and we have CL football to lure someone else in.

Tapps

can we change the narrative slightly to “scored that EL final winning goal AGAINST 5PUR2”?

Fezec

Our position is quite unique for signing Odegaard.

Good though he has been, at his age and experience he’s still a project and I can’t see him going for huge (Haarland) money.

Nor can I see one of the petro-bitches coming in for him as they tend to sign established ‘ready-now’ players.

Due to our precarious world standing, we’d be more suited to having our pants pulled down on price than many of our rivals and still (just about) have the prestige needed to tempt Ø to stay.

Here’s hoping.

Nainsley Aitland Miles

€50m / £43m sounds about right. Real will see what we paid for Partey and won’t accept less than that.
I’m curious if Arteta will also try to sign Ceballos as there could be a discount if we sign the two together.

C.B.

Let’s hope we can get him, great player.

Maybe Arteta can drop him and pretend he isn’t that good towards the end of the season to try to get his price down.

Var Will Solve The Problem

The conspiracy theorist in me thinks that’s what exactly happened with Saliba….may be his contract was based on number of first team appearances by a certain age. And if it’s not met, then we dont have to pay some millions of pounds. Otherwise it doesn’t make sense why he couldn’t even make a Europa or Milk Cup apaperance! But in the end, it’s just a speculation, I am deciding to trust Arteta’s assessment on this.

Old but Gold

He’s been with RM since 2015 and made 8 La Liga appearances. He’s been with us barely a couple of months and made 8 appearances.
It’s pretty obvious Zidane doesn’t fancy him.
It’s obvious he would be a good addition for us and if Madrid don’t seem to want him, a half decent bid might persuade them to get his wage off of their outgoings..

Biggles

Possibly but in the great scheme of RM’s wage bill I don’t think his wages will be a/the crucial factor. They may look to sell him to help raise cash immediately for purchases (very much like we will be doing in the summer, but on a smaller scale) but if they do they will surely push for maximum value from their “asset” so I don’t really see them releasing him for a “half decent” bid (although I hope they do).

Nursing_father

Can`t we pull a ‘Bayern – Gnabry’ on Madrid?

Biggles

Great news for him of course, but possibly not so good for any attempt to sign him at the end of the loan. The obvious problem we have is that the better he plays for us and the more high profile he becomes for his country, the more interest there will be from other clubs (with deeper pockets than ours, I’m sure we can think of a few) come the summer. Although talk of any permanent move is really premature – the last reports from Spain were that RM (with or without Zidane) had no intention of selling him –… Read more »

Vonnie

He’s doing really well and it would be fantastic if we could keep him, he seems happy with us, is playing, and probably learning from Mikel. He’s been made Captain of his national team. Players have a lot of input when transfers are decided and if he wants to stay I think it will happen.

YoungFabregas

This is what happens when you bring in actual world class players…

Martin

You mean like Aubameyang

Jarghs

“He leads by example, which normally a captain should do.”

Thinly veiled barb directed toward Aubameyang, following the weekend’s antics? Perhaps I’m reading too much into it.

Gunner08

Odegaard helps so much get a quality center midfielder (hopefully hassim aouar) to go with partey and buy him in the summer please

karl

It is hard to imagine why Madrid thought he was of no use to them in current predicament. He must be thinking twice about returning for more bench time.

Arteta's Hair

Sign him permanently!!

Trez

Honestly he’s the best bet we’ve got after your Jack Grealish and maybe Aouar. I wouldn’t say no to a permanent move provided we get an elite Striker or CM.
ESR needs people like him on the pitch to perform. Honestly I think he’s a better 10 than ESR.

Tasmanian Jesus

Um, so Aubameyang or Partey are not elite?

Grimandinio

He’s a player that we should make a priority to sign this summer!

Odegaard’s buyout clause is for €350 million. Stan and Josh could be heroes, just for one day.

Fatgooner

It’s a real (no pun intended) shame that we didn’t attach some kind of purchase clause to the loan deal. By the summer Odegaard’s value will be sky-high and even if Real Madrid don’t want him others will. We may well find ourselves out-bidded by wealthier clubs.

Hopefully the player will decide he wants to stay with us.

Moses Kundu

If Arsenal are wise by now they could be 90% sure of buying him but to know they are only in business but not bringing joy to funs they will begin talking about buying him when he is already back to Madrid.