Norway’s international Martin Odegaard was signed by Arsenal on loan from Real Madrid.
The 22-year-old playmaker joins the Gunners until the end of the current season, providing some much-needed creativity after Mesut Ozil’s departure.
Due to a lack of first-team minutes so far this season, Odegaard had requested to leave the Santiago Bernabeu in January. He’s only played in La Liga seven times and has yet to complete 90 minutes for Madrid since returning from last season’s Real Sociedad loan spell.
Sociedad had been associated with a move to take Odegaard back this month, but once Arsenal entered the race to sign him, a return became unlikely.
Odegaard revealed the role that Arteta played in his decision, telling the official website of the club: “Of course, I spoke to him before coming here. That was very important to me and he seems to be a top manager and I liked his ideas, the way he sees football and the way he is as well.
He made me feel very good, and it was important for me to come here. He’s been crucial.
I think you want to make sure that it feels good and that there is a plan every time you go to a new place. But I think everything just seems good here.”
“I like the club and I always liked the way that the club wants to play. Everything about the club and now how the manager wants to play, I think it’s a club that suits me well. So I think it’s a good match.”
The Gunners handed Odegaard the No.11 shirt, having worn this season’s No.21 shirt in Madrid.
During the Premier League era, the No.11 shirt was worn by some famous names at Arsenal, including the likes of Marc Overmars, Robin van Persie, and Ozil, who sported that number before swapping to No.10.
In Saturday’s high-profile Premier League match against Manchester United at the Emirates Stadium, Odegaard could be in contention to make his debut.