Saturday, May 25, 2024

Arteta hopes there’s more to come from captain Odegaard

Mikel Arteta says Martin Odegaard has made great steps in his career but he maintains his club captain still has room for improvement.

Frustrated at his failure to score against Aston Villa and Bayern Munich, the Norway international made a decisive contribution in the closing stages of Saturday’s win over Wolves, scoring in stoppage time to take his total tally of goals and assists for Arsenal in the Premier League to 50.

While his key stats this season aren’t as eye-catching as those he achieved last year, there’s no denying his importance to this Arsenal side.

“He’s our captain, he’s one of our main players and when you look at the impact he has with us daily, it’s amazing. So we are really happy to have him,” said Arteta ahead of Tuesday’s clash with Chelsea.

“Has he fulfilled his potential? Hopefully not. Hopefully, there is still more to come. He’s still very young and he’s made huge steps In the last few seasons. He’s got a massive role at the club and hopefully, we can keep growing.”

Facing questions from a Norwegian reporter, he was also asked about how Odegaard has lived with being labelled a ‘wonder kid’ from the moment he broke through at boyhood club Stromsgodset to earn a move to Real Madrid.

Even though the midfielder didn’t make the impact he might have wanted at the Bernabeu, the game time he earned during loan spells in Holland and Spain appears to have served him well.

“He had to wear that label since he was 14 or 15 and that’s not easy. But I think he has handled that in a great way,” said Arteta.

“I think the steps that he made to progress and to have minutes and develop his career, especially when he went to Real Sociedad, I think it was a really intelligent move.

“And then from there, I think he took off and now we have the player that we have.”

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Johnny 4 Hats

Martin Odegaard is my favourite player ☺️

Johnny 4 Hats

If I was nine again I’d be scoring goals in the playground and doing that eye celebration.

But I can’t complain. My childhood was actually spent mimicking another legendary Arsenal number 8 – Ian Wright.

Ebo

A number 8 who was a 9. And speaking of 9’s, Bild is claiming we’re ready to offer up to €115mil for Alexander Isaak this summer. Now that would be something…

Johnny 4 Hats

Very interesting player. I personally like him a lot more than Gyokeres who, for my money, looks a little clumsy and technically unsound, despite being a stone cold bastard in front of goal.

But I don’t think you can spend that sort of money on a player with as checkered an injury history as Isak.

Public Elneny

If we have that kind of money available but can’t identify a CF who we are confident will significantly improve us, we should spend it on a top class winger instead

Hopefully Jesus gets his sharpness back after surgery. It’s becoming clear that Havertz is a pressing/target man CF and not really an 8 or 10. And Trossard and Martinelli can cover when needed. We’ll be fine for another season with those options so long as we have another threat from wide to freshen up our attack

Ebo

Getting down voted as if I’m the one who suggested paying that sum. I don’t think he’s worth more than half that, honestly all these fees are ridiculous and inflated, but go ahead blame me a person who thinks billionaires should be illegal lol

Norwegian Wood

Mine too. But I love Havertz.

Johnny 4 Hats

I think Havertz is the player I want to succeed more than any other.

When he scores or plays great it just feels so good.

We’ve got this amazing reputation as a club for catching falling stars.

Odegaard, Havertz, Sanchez, Bergkamp, Henry… (am I missing some?)

We are the official destination for players who went to a big club too soon.

Daveo

Havertz has absolutely earned my respect, but he’s not at the level of the company you just listed him here in. His workrate is phenomenal, and again off-ball he’s superb and he’s gotten better there all season. Scoring goals he’s clearly improved, but still could be better. However, beyond that he’s still a limited player. His passing just lacks creativity – he’s a really simplified player (passing stats reflect this all season). That works well when he’s with Marty and Rice, and it’s superb when Saka and Martinelli/Jesus are firing on the wings, but it limits us when he plays… Read more »

Norwegian Wood

He’s STILL recovering 😑

Although he’s a safe passer because he is playing to instruction and he also is not highest on his confidence. I think he needs a full season and a preseason with us to truly arrive. Havertz is a creative midfielder. He’ll come into all of that soon while still being a hard worker off the ball like Odegaard.

C.B.

I’d be happy enough with him playing as well as he does for us for the next 10 or more years. If he improves, possible given his youth, that would be fantastic.

Johnny 4 Hats

The great thing about Odegaard is even when he plays badly, he still affects the game.

If you don’t get the crazy assists, deft touches and amazing close ball control, he still manages to impose himself on the opposition.

It’s like he’s peak Conor Gallagher (Palace days) but with Ozil’s technical ability and Declan Rice’s stamina.

Perfect player.

A Different George

He also reads the game out of possession like a natural defender–his tracking back demonstrates his stamina, as you say, but also his intelligence. I’m honestly not sure I’ve ever seen a player who does that while also making those incredible passes.

Heavenly Chapecoense

Cesc.

A Different George

Yeah, maybe so. I tend not to think of Cesc that way, because he didn’t have the pace of someone like Ødegaard, but it’s a pretty nice comparison. Santi recently said that Ødegaard reminded him of himself, which I also wouldn’t have thought.

Johnny 4 Hats

He’s better than Cesc.

*mic drop*

Daveo

Easily better off-ball and defensively compared to Cesc, but in that capacity he’s almost without peers. He’s just phenomenal when we’re out of possession in terms of work-rate, timing, execution and of course leadership in organising the team’s press.

Skinny Ricki

This guy is on course to be up there among my favourite Arsenal midfielders of all time: Chippy Brady, Patrick Vieira, Cesc et al. We must really appreciate his truly outstanding technical ability, his unbelievable commitment and work-rate, and winning mentality, while we have it.

Ebo

Tbh as long as we don’t have a capable backup for him I’d prefer him to be a bit ‘lazier’ and save his strength and stamina a bit more, he looks shot at the end (and lately even sometimes at the beginning) of games, and I’m sure that has sometimes affected the quality of his creative output.

Not saying stop pressing and tracking back, of course not, but maybe pick and choose a bit more cleverly.

Scrubbychubby

His work rate and tenacity is a huge part of his game though. Take that away and he becomes something else, not the thoroughly modern, highly technical, super tenacious workaholic that we know and love.

Daveo

Unbelievable player. IMO it’s a toss up between Marty, Rice, Saliba and Gabby for player of the year and all four should be right up there with anyone else in the league. IMO Odegaard is the best off-ball attacker in world football. Not just from the press he undertakes himself, but for leading and guiding the rest of the forwards and mids into an efficient tactical team press. Watching him organise and lead that press is where his leadership qualities are highlighted the most. Then of course there is his otherworldly vision. Truly a world class player. And I say… Read more »

Ebo

I’d add Saka and White to that list, imo all 6 have had more or less equally magnificent seasons for us. You might argue Saka hasn’t played as consistently well as the others, but he’s delivered the most end product.

Daveo

I think Marty O and Rice (and Gabby and Saliba; incredible centre-half combo) are world class players, I think Saka is on the verge of becoming that, but he’s not quite there – close, dam close. Will he be? Absolutely. I think he’ll be cracking the 18-20 goal per year mark in the EPL very soon…

Johan

He has been so much better for 3/4 of this season than his numbers suggest. It’s our responsibility to get someone this summer who can finish the chances Martin creates. He really flourished playing with Isak at Real Sociedad…

Stonks

For the next transfer window, we must buy an player who is 50-75% Odegaard. This guy will some rest from time to time

mrugunner

how about elneny?

yes

“50-75% Odegaard” finally someone with insight into the scouting industry

William Nilliam

Ø captain my captain

Henkamp

His numbers are down from last season because of a.) Team mates have not been clinical enough to finish the chances he created b.) He is dropping a lot deeper than last year. But I still think he HAS been more consistent than he was last season.

Getting a clinical striker and an all-round 8 for the LCM position this summer, could see him go up a level or two next season! Add the fact that he is going to have the summer off to recharge his batteries. There much to look forward to, for sure.

Scrubbychubby

I remember when he was the big up and coming wonderkid at 16. Fantastic that he has become not just an Arsenal player, but a really integral one and a club captain to boot. The Madrid move at 16 seemed ill advised at the time and proved to be just that. But glad he finally found his home at the Arsenal.

yen

Looking at the comment section, get that crazy twitter tactico who claims Odegaard is our biggest problem over here… just for fun.

AlexNuggz

Yep, Nonewthing has an obession with his Odegaard slander. I questioned him on it once and got attacked by his Stans who said he should be dropped and sold for Fabio Vieira

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