Arsenal announced the signing of Martin Odegaard on loan from Real Madrid yesterday. The excitement levels around the Emirates have shot up, and rightly so.
The Norwegian is a fantastic footballer. He is an out-and-out creator, and his vision is a blessing to all the attackers who will play in front of him.
Arsenal players will truly benefit from his arrival. We take a look at three players who are almost certain to thrive with Odegaard pulling strings from the middle of the park.
It is safe to say that the Arsenal man hasn’t looked anything like his previous self this season. Five goals in 17 league appearances doesn’t sound anything like the Aubameyang we all know and love, and there is a reason behind it.
Apart from a few appearances through the middle, Auba has mainly featured on the left. That definitely isn’t a bad thing, but the problem our skipper has faced this term is that he has been asked to create as well as score.
Auba has often been seen sticking to his position on the left and feeding crosses into the middle when it should have been the other way around. That clearly didn’t help him, but with Odegaard now in the squad, the Gabon star can jump onto through balls with his diagonal runs towards the goal.
Emile Smith Rowe
Odegaard’s arrival is a blessing in disguise for Smith Rowe. Yes, he will have to work harder to keep his place in the squad, but the pressure on his young shoulders will reduce massively now that Real Madrid man is in.
Smith Rowe has already played 15 times for us this season. He has performed brilliantly in almost all of those games, but everyone following the club are worried that he might get burnt out if Arteta continues to rely on him game after game.
Thankfully, that worry is now gone and Odegaard fighting for the same position will push both players to be at their absolute best. That is excellent news for Arsenal and Arteta.
A defender benefitting from an attacker’s arrival does sound strange, but hear us out. Aubameyang cutting inside will force the opposition full-back to move out of position to keep the Arsenal skipper in check.
That leaves Tierney with a ton of space on the left side of the attacking third. Emile Smith Rowe has done well to find him in recent weeks and the Scotsman has thrived as a result. However, he didn’t have that when we were struggling.
Odegaard is brilliant at picking players’ runs. If he can’t squeeze a ball through to Aubameyang when he cuts in, a pass to Tierney will be a straightforward one, and the former Celtic man will have all the time in the world to pick his man in the box with one of his delightful crosses.