Martin Odegaard

Martin Odegaard is a 22-year-old midfielder who currently plays on loan at Arsenal from Real Madrid.

Martin Odegaard speaking to Arsenal.com after helping the club to a win over Leeds United
Arsenal deals: Arsenal's Norwegian midfielder Martin Odegaard (L) gets instructions from Arsenal's Spanish manager Mikel Arteta (R) as he comes on as a substitute during the English Premier League football match between Arsenal and Manchester United at the Emirates Stadium in London on January 30, 2021. (Photo by Shaun Botterill / POOL / AFP)

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UDINE, ITALY: Achraf Hakimi of FC Internazionale looks on during the Serie A match between Udinese Calcio and FC Internazionale at Dacia Arena on January 23, 2021. (Photo by Alessandro Sabattini/Getty Images)

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Arsenal's English striker Bukayo Saka (L) celebrates with Arsenal's English midfielder Emile Smith Rowe before his goal is disallowed during the English Premier League football match between Wolverhampton Wanderers and Arsenal at the Molineux stadium in Wolverhampton, central England on February 2, 2021. - 14 (Photo by Catherine Ivill / POOL / AFP)

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Emile Smith Rowe

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Burnley v Arsenal - Premier League - Turf Moor Arsenal s Martin Odegaard during the Premier League match at Turf Moor, Burnley. Picture date: Saturday March 6, 2021.Copyright: Jon Super

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How much are Arsenal paying for Martin Odegaard?

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Real Madrid's Norwegian midfielder Martin Odegaard reacts during the Spanish league football match Real Betis against Real Madrid CF at the Benito Villamarin stadium in Seville on September 26, 2020. (Photo by JORGE GUERRERO / AFP) (Photo by JORGE GUERRERO/AFP via Getty Images)
Real Madrid’s Norwegian midfielder Martin Odegaard reacts during the Spanish league football match Real Betis against Real Madrid CF at the Benito Villamarin stadium in Seville on September 26, 2020. (Photo by JORGE GUERRERO / AFP) (Photo by JORGE GUERRERO/AFP via Getty Images)

With Mikel Arteta desperate to add some creativity to the side and ease the burden on Emile Smith Rowe, Martin Odegaard was been identified and a deal agreed.

The player seemingly wanted to return to Real Sociedad, where he has already enjoyed one loan spell, but Real Madrid wanted to loan him outside of La Liga, so Arsenal were able to benefit.

The player has been used sparingly, to say the least, at Real Madrid but it seems they are unwilling to part ways with the 22-year-old midfielder on a permanent basis.

Arsenal paid £2m to loan Odegaard for the rest of the season but any loan deal will not come with an option to buy according to reports.

Odegaard currently earns £85kpw and you would expect Arsenal to cover that as well.

Odegaard on trial

Real Madrid's Norwegian midfielder Martin Odegaard warms up on the sidelines during the Spanish League football match between Real Madrid and Celta Vigo at the Alfredo Di Stefano stadium in Valdebebas, northeast of Madrid, on January 2, 2021. (Photo by OSCAR DEL POZO / AFP)
Real Madrid’s Norwegian midfielder Martin Odegaard warms up on the sidelines during the Spanish League football match between Real Madrid and Celta Vigo at the Alfredo Di Stefano stadium in Valdebebas, northeast of Madrid, on January 2, 2021. (Photo by OSCAR DEL POZO / AFP)

When Martin Ødegaard was just 16, Arsenal tried to sign him from Strømsgodset and took the player on trial.

That wasn’t anything special, the attacking midfielder trialled at a host of clubs across Europe. Now 22, Ødegaard made his international debut at just 15. It wasn’t hard to see why so many wanted him.

In the end, he made the mistake of opting to go to Real Madrid too early rather than a smaller club where he would have had more chance of playing regularly. He cost them just £2.52m.

To date, Ødegaard has played just 11 times for the Real Madrid first team, totalling just 489 minutes.

Martin Odegaard confirms the truth about his trial with Arsenal at 15

Martin Odegaard has confirmed he could have signed for Arsenal when he was just 15, and he thinks his eventual move was ‘meant to be’.

Martin Odegaard with Arsenal (Photo via Arsenal.com)
Martin Odegaard with Arsenal (Photo via Arsenal.com)

As we reported all the way back in 2015, Martin Odegaard spent time training with Arsenal before joining Real Madrid. He reportedly visited the club before his 16th birthday in 2014, but he’d never confirmed as much publicly before today.

Speaking after completing his loan move to Arsenal, Odegaard addressed the rumours and admitted he consistently had a ‘good feeling’ about the club. Even if it’s just a loan, for now, the 22-year-old says maybe he was meant to end up here.

“Yeah, I was here,” Odegaard confirmed. “I visited the club and trained a little bit. I had a chat with the club and I had a really good feeling when I was here.

“I was thinking a lot about it. In the end, it wasn’t my decision at that time, but I had a really good time and I remember it well.

“When I was here the first time, I had a good feeling, and every time I heard about the club, I had a good feeling. And now I’m here, so I think it’s maybe meant to be.”

Odegaard has spent the last five-and-a-half years with Real Madrid as his parent club, but many of those have been away on loan.

Real Madrid's Norwegian midfielder Martin Odegaard warms up on the sidelines during the Spanish League football match between Real Madrid and Celta Vigo at the Alfredo Di Stefano stadium in Valdebebas, northeast of Madrid, on January 2, 2021. (Photo by OSCAR DEL POZO / AFP)
Real Madrid’s Norwegian midfielder Martin Odegaard warms up on the sidelines during the Spanish League football match between Real Madrid and Celta Vigo at the Alfredo Di Stefano stadium in Valdebebas, northeast of Madrid, on January 2, 2021. (Photo by OSCAR DEL POZO / AFP)

He joined SC Heerenveen in the Eredivisie for the second half of 2016/17, before spending another year on loan with them in 2017/18. He then joined Vitesse for 2018/19, before spending 2019/20 in La Liga with Real Sociedad.

As a result, this season is the first one he’s actually been a proper part of the Real Madrid senior squad. He made nine appearances for them in the first half of the campaign, but from December onwards he mostly sat around on the bench.

It’s not easy breaking into the Real Madrid midfield. The players starting ahead of Odegaard in his last squad appearance against Osasuna were Toni Kroos, Luka Modric, and Casemiro.

When Modric came off in that game, he was replaced by Isco. Next to make a substitute appearance was Federico Valverde. So that should give you some idea of the competition Odegaard faced.

If Arsenal can show the player he has an important role to play with them for the next few months, perhaps he’ll consider whether he might be better off making the move permanent in the summer.