Yesterday evening saw the FIFA Best Awards take place, and whilst Arsenal’s Women’s team rightly had a spotlight shone on them in the form of Leah Williamson and Beth Mead, Martin Odegaard played a small role on the night.

As captain of Norway, the Arsenal skipper is granted three votes in the Men’s Player of the Year award, and with the full list now published, we now know who Odegaard voted for, with the 24-year-old naming eventual winner Lionel Messi as his first-choice pick.

In a surprise, though, Odegaard named Erling Haaland as his second-choice pick, with the Norweigian international thriving with Manchester City and even being named in the Men’s Best XI for the year, with the Arsenal captain rounding off his votes with PSG superstar Kylian Mbappe.

Odegaard’s FIFA Best Awards votes make for an interesting read

Odegaard FIFA Best Awards
Photo by Simon Stacpoole/Offside/Offside via Getty Images

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Some Arsenal fans will be, of course, disappointed that Odegaard voted for a Premier League rival in Haaland at the FIFA Best Awards, however, given how rare it is for a Norwegian talent to come through and dominate football as much as the City striker has, it’s easy to realise why the playmaker made such a vote.

With zero Arsenal players even being named in the men’s vote, Odegaard can be cut some slack for naming an international teammate as well as Messi and Mbappe, two players who made it to the FIFA World Cup final and are currently thriving alongside one another at PSG.

Indeed, with Arsenal top of the league this season, there’s a good chance that some players could be named in next year’s list, with Bukayo Saka, Gabriel Martinelli and Odegaard himself all playing the best football they ever have at club level this campaign.

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