Having Odegaard at Arsenal is amazing, says Thomas Partey

Martin Macdonald
Martin Macdonald Updated: 17 May 2021 19:07 BST 2 min read
Having Odegaard at Arsenal is amazing, says Thomas Partey

Arsenal summer signing Thomas Partey says it is “amazing” that the Gunners have managed to land wonderkid Martin Odegaard on loan from Real Madrid.

Ahead of the 2020/21 campaign, Odegaard’s two-season loan deal at Real Sociedad was cut short at the midway point, with Zinedine Zidane keen to bring the Norwegian back to his parent club, having been impressed with his contributions at the Basque outfit.

Despite starting the first two games of the season under Zidane, Odegaard fell out of favour thereafter, and would only start one other La Liga game before January.

Though Zidane reportedly wanted to keep Odegaard at Real Madrid for the second half of the season, the player’s wish was to leave for some first-team football.

Arsenal subsequently took advantage to take him on loan for six months, and Partey, who played against Odegaard in La Liga, is delighted at the acquisition.

“It’s difficult when you play against him. I remember playing against him, he’s so intelligent, he is always quick on the ball, he doesn’t give you a chance to win the ball,” the former Atletico Madrid midfielder explained to Stadium Astro.

“It’s amazing to have him here. I hope he has a great season and he’s able to help us achieve what we want to achieve.”

Odegaard’s move to London took place late in the transfer window so he has only made two appearances so far for the Gunners, both coming off the bench in a draw against Man Utd and a loss versus Aston Villa at the weekend.

Arsenal are reportedly interested in making the loan deal permanent, but manager Mikel Arteta has previously stated that any transfer will be dependant on whether Real Madrid see a future for Odegaard at the Santiago Bernabeu.

The presence of Zidane at the club will likely play a part, though the Frenchman is under pressure in his role as head coach, with Los Blancos seven points off the pace in La Liga, with rivals Atletico Madrid leading with two games in hand.