Arsenal: Arteta lauds 'intelligent' Odegaard
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Martin Odegaard has hinted he would like to stay at Arsenal despite insisting he is yet to make a decision on his long-term future. The Norwegian orchestrated a spirited Gunners comeback on Sunday as Mikel Arteta’s side rose from the dead to draw 3-3 at West Ham.
Arsenal were trailing 3-0 in the first half before Odegaard and his team-mates turned it on to earn a point in east London.
Odegaard’s final ball and classy disguise on his passes had supporters drooling over the prospect of a permanent deal this summer.
The club landed the playmaker on loan from Real Madrid in January but are now determined to keep him, as they look to twist Florentino Perez’s arm in the summer.
Now the 22-year-old has spoken out on the situation amid reports he would also like to stay.
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“I haven’t thought about what’ll happen in summer,” he told Norwegian outlet VG.
“My deal with Arsenal is until the end of season. We’ll see what happens this summer.
“I’ve said things before that I still stand for: Stability and development are key words.”
It’s not the first time Odegaard has cited his enjoyment at the feeling of stability.
The attacking midfielder thrived on loan at Heerenveen, Vitesse and Real Sociedad where the team was built around his qualities.
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That didn’t happen when he returned to Real Madrid though and he often found himself on the bench under Zinedine Zidane.
That’s why he pushed for a move in January in a bid for regular playing time and now he is a mainstay in Arteta’s side.
His creativity and productivity has also helped bring the best out of Alexandre Lacazette, who fired two in the comeback at West Ham.
When asked about his relationship with Arteta, Odegaard was full of praise for his manager.
“Very good. He is incredible,” he added. “I have a lot to learn from him. I just need to ‘sharpen my ears’ and pay attention. He is fantastic.
“It’s been about improving from the very beginning. I feel I quickly adapted and understood how we play. I lacked match fitness and self-confidence. The more games I’ve played, the better I’ve become. It’s a rising curve.”
Arteta admitted after the rollercoaster affair at the London Stadium that Odegaard has taken his side to another level in attack.
“I think he had an incredible performance, he was very intelligent the way he read the game, the way he affected the game and again he showed how much he wants to win,” he said.
“When everyone was a little bit trembling, he gave us that composure on the ball and he created chance after chance.
“I love talented and creative players that all the time are willing to take that ball and make things happen, that are mobile and also hard-working. He is one of them.
“We have some others with different qualities but it’s true that Martin is now giving us a different level on certain things that we didn’t have.”
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