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Odegaard addresses Arsenal future question as initial loan deal from Real Madrid runs down

12:39 GMT 23/03/2021
Martin Odegaard Arsenal 2020-21
The Norwegian playmaker is due back at Santiago Bernabeu in the summer and claims to have held no talks regarding an extended stay in England

Martin Odegaard claims to have given no thought to staying on at Arsenal beyond the end of his initial loan from Real Madrid, with the Norwegian midfielder eager to remain focused on the present.

The talented 22-year-old linked up with the Gunners during the winter transfer window after finding regular game time at Santiago Bernabeu hard to come by.

There have been mixed messages when it comes to his future, with an extended stay in England and imminent return to Spain both being mooted, but Odegaard insists no discussions have been held as yet regarding summer plans.

What has been said?

Quizzed on his future at Arsenal by VG, Odegaard said: “To be completely honest, I have not thought about it. 

“I have an agreement until the summer and I am focusing on that. I want stability and development, those are key words.”

How has Odegaard fared at Arsenal?

Mikel Arteta drafted in another creative midfielder to help counter the departure of Mesut Ozil from Emirates Stadium.

Odegaard was eased into the fold in north London, but has now recorded two goals through 12 appearances and is taking on greater responsibility in a number 10 role.

He has said of his experiences in England: “I think it has been good, right from the start. 

“I adapted to the way we played quite early. I lacked a little self-confidence and things like that, but I feel I have got better and better every day."

A man who has been named as captain of his country heading into the next round of international fixtures added on working with Arteta: “He is incredibly good, and there is a lot to learn from him. 

“It's just a matter of opening your ears and following what he says.”

The bigger picture

Odegaard is now focused on the start of 2022 World Cup qualification with Norway, but still has plenty of targets left to hit at Arsenal.

The Gunners, who recovered from three goals down to take a point off West Ham last time out, are in the process of chasing down a top-six finish in the Premier League.

They have also made their way through to the quarter-finals of the Europa League, where they are due to meet Sparta Prague, meaning that major silverware could be collected in 2021.

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