Mikel Arteta raves about Martin Odegaard ahead of Olympiacos clash
Posted On March 18, 2021
Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has spoken highly of Martin Odegaard ahead of the Europa League clash against Olympiacos tonight.
The Norwegian joined the Gunners on loan from Real Madrid in January after playing under 400 minutes of first-team football this term.
He initially took time to adapt to the club’s style of play, but has recently turned up with goals against Olympiacos and Tottenham Hotspur.
This has attracted plenty of attention and Arteta believes the attacker is ‘getting better and better’ and highlighted that his ‘work rate has been phenomenal’.
The Gunners boss added that the 22-year-old has room for improvement and would like to see him to get into the opponent’s box more often.
He told Arsenal.com: “He is getting better and better. I think his understanding of what we want is excellent.
“His work rate has been phenomenal and then he’s doing something that, in my opinion, could improve a lot which is getting in the opponents’ box and maybe being more decisive in the scoreline.”
“He is doing that with the two goals and he’s had some really important entries into the zones and he looks all the time really dangerous. If he adds that to his game, he becomes a real complete player.”
Odegaard has already made 10 appearances for the Gunners. Aside from his two goals, he has played in the build-up of several goals.
He has managed to settle with the Gunners in recent weeks after initially being a regular on the bench for the north London side.
There were concerns that his arrival may hamper the playing time of Emile Smith Rowe, but that has not been the case.
Smith Rowe has adapted comfortably in the left wing position and he produced his best display of the season in the north London derby on Sunday.
Arteta is keen on keeping hold of Odegaard on either a temporary or permanent deal next term. Only time will tell whether the Gunners can find an agreement with Los Blancos.
Odegaard is likely to start in the number 10 role when the Gunners host Olympiacos in the second leg of the Europa League last 16 tie tonight.
The club secured a 3-1 win in Piraeus last week and they are in a good position to progress to the last eight of the competition.
Read: Aubameyang returns, Predicted Arsenal line-up (4-2-3-1) vs Olympiacos.
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