Premier League: Martin Odegaard – eight years at the top

Status: 01/18/2023 1:28 p.m.

At 16 years old Martin Odegaard as a future mix of Messi and Ronaldo and went to Real Madrid. Tough times followed with numerous transfers – only now, at 24 at Arsenal, has he risen to the top.

It was a long and difficult journey, with pageantry and provincialism, provincialism having long reigned supreme. Again and again, reality has failed to live up to the insane promises that rested on the slender shoulders of this young Norwegian, who had made his senior debut before joining the world club. Half of Europe ripped the supposed talent of the century, Real Madrid won the race.

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Ronaldo out, Odegaard in

His first head coach after his departure If Stromsgodset, maybe that was also a problem, was a world star right away. With the highest standards team game and an extreme aversion to special treatments. Odegaard almost always formed with the Real first team. But at first he was only allowed to play second Real Madrid Castile. He said then Zinedine Zidane for the second team on the sidelines. This interaction between “practice” and “play below” describe Odegaard Years later as a construction that “taken somewhere in the middle” held.

Difficult times at Real – Martin Ödegaard is behind them

Only the last match of the 2014/15 season was allowed the playmaker made his first appearance in the Premier League celebrate: In a 7:3 against the FC Getafe he stayed on the pitch for 32 minutes at the age of 16 years and 156 days, becoming the youngest player in royal history at the time. In the 58th minute he replaced Cristiano Ronaldo, who had scored three times that day and many saw him as his successor at some stage.

Still Real, but not Madrid

This pressure was too strong, especially since Odegaards Competitors Casemiro, Luka modric and Toni Kroos were called up – then Isco and Federico Valverde. Odegaard wanted to play and was loaned out, first to SC Heerenveen and then to Vitesse Arnhem. Meanwhile, there was not much to say about a return to Real, Heerenveen Odegaard at 38 Eredivisie-Applied two goals and four assists. His numbers at Arnhem were a bit better: eight goals and eleven assists in 31 games. After that, he returned to Real, but only to Real Sociedad after San Sebastian.

Odegaards return to Bernabéu rose on November 23, 2019, to the position of the tens of Real Sociedad the Norwegian faced Casemiro and when he went to the front he was matched Sergei Ramos and Raphael Varane The way. He played correctly, but without efficiency: the “Royal” won 3-1. The second leg also went 2-1 to the now von Zidane trained Madrid pros, Odegaard was substituted after 79 minutes. At the end of the season, he had four La Liga goals and six assists.

Repatriation and sale to the Premier League

Zidanewho like four times Champions League– The winning coach will go down in Real history, but not as the greatest promoter of talent, nevertheless approved after this season Odegaards Return to the “white ballet”. But again, it wasn’t enough for a breakthrough. Only three starting XIs and five jokers were allowed Zidane the slender midfielder. Then Arsenal FC bought it.

It was a move where the omens weren’t exactly bright either: the physically fit Premier League and the lean Scandinavian, how could it go well? But in London, they believed in his quality and paid the equivalent of 35 million euros after having Odegaard had previously borrowed for six months. His very busy father and godfather Hans Erik Odegaard again had contact with all kinds of clubs during this phase, there were concrete offers in addition to Arsenal, including FC liverpool and Ajax amsterdamof the Bundesliga, Bayer Leverkusen and Borussia Mönchengladbach were reportedly interested, but they could only afford a loan – but Real only wanted to sell.

Lucky Mikel Arteta

The decision fell on Arsenal and coach Mikel Arteta proved to be the best Odegaards Stroke of luck. Under him, he didn’t have to prove from day one that he was a world star who was prevented. Integrated Spanish Odegaard in the group, gave him tasks that were easier to solve. Zidane had never really regained contact with the Norwegian, who was arguably not too accessible, and his coach at the time, Leonid Slutski, also described his behavior in Arnhem “like that of a robot”.

But Arteta spoke to him a lot, involved him in his deliberations. And managed to get more out of him than any previous coach. Like Slutsky Odegaard assessed, the Spaniard could not understand: “Martin is such a nice and humble guy, everyone loves him here”he said in February 2022. He understands that the incredible hype for his talent him long “extremely busy” have, but now be Odegaard “Part of our project and that’s what he really wanted to be. Now he’s found his place, he’s really happy here. He has the environment, the people and the stakes to enjoy it.”

Championship at your fingertips

Despite his star-studded ensemble, Arteta is all-out Odegaard, who made a significant contribution to the Gunners reaching the Championship as leaders this season with eight goals and five assists in 17 games. last meeting Odegaard also in the 2-0 victory against Tottenham Hotspurs, Sunday against Manchester United (22/01/2023, strong points in the sports broadcast from 7.15 p.m. and live ticker on sportschau.de from 5.30 p.m.), the next step towards the title should follow.

Odegaards Ambition would rather inspire that. Of course he also wants real Madrid show that there has not been enough trust – according to the very few statements made by Odegaard have themselves been published, this is clearly heard. ‘Viaplayfootball’ asked him if he ever regretted leaving Madrid and he replied: “I’m very happy to be here now. It was the right decision considering the way things went in Madrid. I’ve been through a lot despite my young age and now I’m part of this team. fantastic full of young players.”

“He will be on top”

Despite the first place and the best statistics, Arteta sees Odegaard far from having reached the end of its possibilities. The coach praises: “Everything he does is there to improve. He probably wants it more than anyone on this pitch, every day. He will be at the top.” This “at the top” will never be at Real Madrid again.

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