Real Madrid president Florentino Perez has reportedly decided Martin Odegaard will be afforded a more prominent role in the side next season, ending Arsenal’s hopes of buying the Norwegian permanently.
Frustrated with a lack of gametime after ending a loan spell with Real Sociedad to return to Madrid, Odegaard left the La Liga champions for Arsenal in January. The six-month loan was designed to help him get his form and fitness back. For their part, Arsenal got a player who could effectively replace the frozen-out Mesut Ozil.
Odegaard has made a positive impression during his time in north London. The attention quickly turned to whether Arsenal will be able to keep him on a permanent basis.
Speaking recently, Odegaard has admitted he feels very much at home with Arsenal.
“I’m really happy. Everything is good here at the club,” he told the Premier League. “I’ve felt at home since the first day, I get on really well with my teammates and everyone at the club. I feel really good.”
There have been conflicting claims about Arsenal’s chances of securing that deal, however. Indeed, much depends on Zinedine Zidane. The legendary Real coach hasn’t always found room in his XI for the Norwegian midfielder.
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However, according to Don Balon, Perez will step in and bring Odegaard back to the Spanish capital. The Spanish outlet claims the Los Blancos president has been impressed with his form in the Premier League. As such, it’s stated he wants Zidane to usher him into the fold.
Furthermore, Perez believes Odegaard’s presence can be the key factor in the race to sign Erling Haaland. The Borussia Dortmund striker is likely to be on the move this summer and will command a huge fee. He will have his pick of clubs, but Perez hopes the presence of compatriot Odegaard can steer Haaland their way.
Arsenal offered Kubo as replacement
News of Odegaard’s return to Real will come as a blow for Mikel Arteta. Odegaard has two goals and two assists in 13 appearances for the Gunners. Indeed, the Gunners boss is reportedly desperate to make the signing permanent.
But with that hope gone, Perez is reported to have offered Arteta the chance to sign Takefusa Kubo as a replacement. The Japan winger joined Real on a five-year deal from Yokohama in 2019.
While yet to play for their first team, his development has been well managed with loans at Mallorca, Villarreal and Getafe.
Perez though is reported to have offered Kubo to Arsenal, with Don Balon reporting that Arteta is keen.
The 19-year-old has one goal and four assists this season and has been maturing in LaLiga. But a move to Arsenal would further his growth and also give Arsenal the chance to replace Odegaard. While not like for like, Kubo can play across the frontline and is comfortable as a No 10.
And Don Balon claim Arteta, while sad to be losing Odegaard, is warming to the idea of bringing in Kubo this summer.