Martin Odegaard Suits Arsenal
Almost exclusively a No. 10-type attacking midfielder for Madrid, Odegaard has dabbled in central midfield before, primarily last season, an area he’s shown himself to be comfortable in. Operating as a No. 8 on the left side of a 4-3-3, his ability in tight spaces, solid work-rate off the ball and chance creation statistics highlighted his effectiveness.
It’s hard to avoid the similarities between the two, as Odegaard is also someone who does a lot of his offensive work in wide areas. Positionally, Arteta’s system suits him perfectly, so, in essence, why not?
Of course, bringing him in under the pretense of playing every week would be unethical. On this form, riding the wave he is, Smith Rowe plays in the biggest games. There are plenty of those, not least in the Europa League knockouts, thus convincing Odegaard to make the move knowing he isn’t first choice would be no easy feat.
Smith Rowe’s place in the side isn’t under threat, which he’ll be aware of, so acquiring a target who won’t disrupt the status quo is what’s needed. Odegaard needs minutes wherever he can get them, and while he won’t earn them every week at Arsenal, it’ll be more than he’s accumulating now. Between them they can help each other.
Signing another young talent whose career is still yet to fully take off is more viable than an established name in world football who will arrive on big wages. Should the 22-year-old rekindle the form he showed last season then he’d be a superb addition to Mikel Arteta‘s squad on a short-term deal.
As per Charles Watts, there are no indications at present that Arsenal are moving for Odegaard. It’s a narrative being peddled by fans eager for additions. And, given the options available, perhaps the wisest one.