Talk of Martin Odegaard joining Arsenal from Real Madrid is accelerating, with sources in Spain suggesting the deal is “very close”.
Odegaard made it clear recently that he wanted to leave Madrid so that his development does not stagnate.
After joining the club as a 16-year-old six years ago, Odegaard has struggled to break into the first team. He was showing promise on loan at Real Sociedad last season, but then Madrid called him back.
The attacking midfielder may have expected to play a bigger role at the Bernabeu after his loan in the Basque Country was interrupted. However, that has not been the case.
Odegaard has only started three La Liga matches so far this season. The Norway international has clocked up just 233 minutes of league action in total.
At 22 years old, he knows he needs to step up and play more regularly. He is not getting those chances in the Spanish capital.
Therefore, Odegaard is expected to leave the club – perhaps on loan again – this month. A return to Real Sociedad would be an option, but Arsenal are also contenders.
It emerged on Wednesday that Arsenal had approached Madrid to discuss a potential move for Odegaard. It would not be the first time they have explored such a route, as they also currently have Dani Ceballos on loan from the same club.
Ceballos has urged his former teammate to find somewhere he can play more regularly, and it may well be that they link up again at the Emirates Stadium.
Now, Sport claim that a deal for Odegaard to join Arsenal is “very close”. The report says that his “flight to London is about to take off”.
Transfer expert Fabrizio Romano adds that Odegaard is “tempted” by the chance to join Arsenal on loan. His preference until now was to return to Real Sociedad, but he is weighing up his options after hearing of Arsenal’s interest.
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Should they win the race for Odegaard, Arsenal would get themselves a replacement for Mesut Ozil, who is leaving for Fenerbahce.
The Gunners have been crying out for more creativity all season and Odegaard could be the man to fill the void, alongside academy graduate Emile Smith Rowe.
Arsenal have chance for another signing
Odegaard is not the only Madrid player to be linked with Arsenal in recent days.
Reports have also suggested one winger who is equally out of favour could be available for transfer.
Arsenal are long-term admirers and this could be a chance for them to get their man in a potential double swoop.