Real Madrid: Why Martin Odegaard made a mistake by going to Arsenal

Real Madrid: Why Martin Odegaard made a mistake by going to Arsenal


I was mistaken. When we first heard that Real Madrid attacking midfielder Martin Odegaard was moving to North London, I thought it was a fantastic move for the Norwegian. 

It seemed to be an opportunity for him to elevate a successful squad and work with both quality veterans like Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and rising young players like Bukayo Saka.

Then I was wrong again when I said Odegaard seemed to be on the verge of his Real Sociedad form after a sensational performance against a West Ham side that has been stronger than Arsenal. 


    According to, Odegaard was by far the best player on the field, completing four main passes and four dribbles in a 3-3 draw.

    Odegaard has had one excellent game against Newcastle United and one assist off the bench against Crystal Palace since that match on March 21. 

    Odegaard has done very little, apart from a couple of good imaginative numbers against two of the Premier League's worst teams. 

    And Arsenal has been a non-factor, hovering in the middle of the table, currently in the ninth position, just two points ahead of Leeds United.

    Since joining Arsenal this winter, Odegaard has made eight starts and five substitute appearances. Essentially, he's had little time to adjust, and although he's shown signs of brilliance, he's been a glorified rotational player on a mediocre squad.

    Why did Martin Odegaard place more faith in Mikel Arteta to aid his growth than in Zinedine Zidane?

    Many of us thought Odegaard's move to Arsenal would provide him with an opportunity to face some pressure in the Premier League and contribute to a squad that is more than the sum of its parts. 

    Instead, he's been dealing with Mikel Arteta, a boss who seems to be more of a charlatan than the professional disciplinarian he imagines himself to be.

    Odegaard's remarks about his future have been odd, and have even irritated some Madridistas, because while many loanees have expressed a willingness to play for Real Madrid in the future, Odegaard has been coy.

    Real Madrid: Why Martin Odegaard made a mistake by going to Arsenal

    I'm not sure what he saw in Arsenal. When you consider where the club was before Stan Kroenke purchased it, this club is actually owned by one of the most inept ownerships in football, if not THE most incompetent. There is talent on the team, but no one is being used to their full potential.

    Arsenal, on the other hand, would be better off investing their time and energy in other players, especially their homegrown youngsters. They need to create something long-term, and I don't believe Odegaard is a part of that. Despite a few good moments, he didn't blow anyone away in this loan.

    Odegaard believed in Arteta and desired a challenge at Arsenal. He's logged more minutes than he would have at Real Madrid, but by how much?

    Since Odegaard should have had genuine first-team chances to relieve the overburdened Toni Kroos and Luka Modric, and he could have played a part in the Champions League rather than scoring bangers against the likes of Olympiacos in the Europa League. 

    By the way, Arsenal was eliminated from the Europa League semi-finals and will not compete in this secondary competition next season.

    The reality is that Odegaard took a chance on playing time rather than being patient and trusting a legendary, effective manager in Zinedine Zidane. I don't blame him for wanting to play, but he did nothing to support his career.

    He squandered precious time playing for the team that could have been one of his potential ambitions, instead of being a talented yet unreliable bit player for a losing side with no identity. While some Arsenal fans want him to stay, it seems that many would rather spend their money on someone else or concentrate on their own young talents.

    Real Madrid will warmly welcome Odegaard back, but some Madridistas will be wary of him after this loan. Because some fans would believe Odegaard took the easy way out after battling for so many years and impressing at clubs such as Vitesse and Real Sociedad.

    Whereas players like Eder Militao and Alvaro Odriozola worked hard to earn Zidane's confidence, Odegaard, who the manager explicitly requested to be a part of his squad and started on Matchday 1, left for a manager who has never won anything.

    Odegaard's loan was insufficient to assist him. Neither did it support Los Blancos. Neither does Arsenal. And now, in 2021-2022, he must make up for lost time for Real Madrid by displaying a side of his game not seen since the first half of the 2019-2020 season.

    He is still young, and his talent is undeniable. However, Madridistas are starting to wonder whether he wants to be an elite player in Madrid or if he would rather have guaranteed minutes at a lower-level club.

                            Real Madrid: Why Martin Odegaard made a mistake by going to Arsenal

    At the end of the day, it's his decision, but it would be a letdown if he didn't give it his all in Madrid, which is likely what he should have done this season. And, as we all know, how fans view him is extremely important in football, especially in Madrid. They must put all of their emotions aside and fully help the young man.

    We know he has the potential to be a superstar at the Santiago Bernabeu, and he needs the fans' full support. His chapter with Real Madrid has only just begun, and I hope Odegaard is aware of that, even if the 2020-2021 season was a disappointment for him.


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    1. He's welcome In Emirates stadium, so don't worry yourself.