• Dan Tracey


Although the January transfer window has been quiet when compared to previous years, that has not stopped Arsenal from carrying out a multitude of business and although it has been more outs than ins, there is another new arrival to now report.

After Mat Ryan joined on loan from Brighton last week, manager Mikel Arteta has once again delved into the short-term market and with his latest capture, he will hope to solve the Gunners’ creative problems.

Problems, that have arguably been rife since Mesut Ozil’s period of exile began and with Arsenal and Real Madrid already doing previous loan business in the shape of Dani Ceballos’ current deal, the North London outfit have gone back to the Spanish capital for more.

Because the man tasked with carrying Arsenal’s attacking midfield burden, is none other than Martin Odegaard and for a player who was previously dubbed a ‘wonderkid’, the Emirates could offer him the perfect platform to shine.

The 22-year-old has largely struggled to make an impact at Real Madrid this season, as Zinedine Zidane has constantly relied on more established names - although this has arguably been to the detriment of the World Cup winner.

With Odegaard afforded just nine league appearances for Los Blancos, he has only ever been on the fringes of Real’s stuttering La Liga campaign and with their crosstown rivals Atletico pulling clear, it could mean the end of Zidane’s managerial tenure at the end of the campaign.

Which is why, Arsenal’s new loanee is keen to not fully commit his future long-term, as he would like to see how the dust settles in terms of hiring and firing at the Santiago Bernabeu over the next few months.

Ultimately, a new manager brings new ideas and if someone else takes the reins for the 2021/22, it could well see the Norwegian starlet feature in whatever plans are formed. However, if that is to happen, then the midfielder will have to impress in the Premier League.

Now, a stint at Arsenal because an audition for regular first team football for Real Madrid and if he can impress those within English football, then it eventually comes a win-win situation for current club and employee alike.

If Arsenal’s new capture can add the spark which has been largely missing from their team, then it should fire them up the table and at least keep their lingering hopes of European football next season alive.

While if he does impress over the course of the next few weeks and months, this will obviously have those back in Madrid on high alert and his value to the team will have only increased by the end of the campaign.

We’ve already seen glimpses of what he can do when given regular minutes, as he shone at Real Sociedad in a similar move last season. Now though, it is time to see how he handles the “best league in the world” and whether he really is the real deal or just another overhyped youngster.