Arsenal have finally confirmed the loan signing of Martin Odegaard from Real Madrid in a deal that sees the Norwegian move to North London until the end of the season – and both Edu and Mikel Arteta have commented on the club’s website.
Odegaard, 22, was allowed to leave Real Madrid after failing to break into the side on a regular basis under Zinedine Zidane. That is, despite impressing for Real Sociedad last season in which he had a hand in 16 goals during 36 games.
He has managed just five minutes of La Liga action since the end of November and a move was allowed. David Ornstein claimed in his Athletic podcast that Odegaard had been offered to Sociedad, Leicester and Tottenham – but Arsenal moved “decisively”.
The deal is said to have been done for a couple of days now, but it has taken Arsenal until Wednesday to confirm the move on their website and social media channels. Both Edu and Arteta reacted – with Odegaard handed the number 11 shirt.
✍️ It's øfficial… 😉 pic.twitter.com/4eV5gNjK3x
— Arsenal (@Arsenal) January 27, 2021
Edu said: “We are delighted to welcome Martin to the club until the end of the season. I would like to thank everyone at Real Madrid and Martin’s representatives for their collaboration in making this loan move happen. Martin is an exceptional talent and we are strengthening our squad by introducing an exciting offensive player to the club for the remaining months of this season.”
Arteta said: “It’s great that we’ve secured Martin to come to us until the end of the season. Martin is of course a player that we all know very well and although still young, he has been playing at the top level for a while. Martin will provide us with quality offensive options and we’re all excited to be integrating him into our plans between now and May.”
TBR’s view – A great signing, but permanent clause was needed
Odegaard is a good signing for Arsenal. It gives them competition for Emile Smith-Rowe and with Europa League knockout rounds on the horizon, the Gunners could not continually rely on the England Under-20 international.
However, what happens if Odegaard really impresses and Arsenal fans are desperate to see him stay in North London on a permanent basis? Instead of agreeing a fee now and including a permanent clause in the deal, it is a dry loan.
That could come back to haunt Arsenal. If he impresses, his value will increase and could eventually price Arsenal out of a move.