Martin Odegaard has been a key part of Arsenal’s wins on the pitch this season and Mikel Arteta may be using the tricks and tips he learned while studying under Pep Guardiola at Man City.
Martin Odegaard’s summer arrival and play over the past few months has seen him become a key figure in the team’s fortunes and a former club legend has admitted he was wrong in his analysis of him.
Odegaard’s arrival came after Mesut Ozil left the club after being frozen out by manager Mikel Arteta, and Ozil’s latest run in with his new team’s management team may have justified Arteta’s decision.
Ozil left the club in January 2021 to join Fenerbache but just over a year later, has been suspended by the Turkish side after a war of words with interim manager Ismail Kartal.
Arteta has Arsenal sitting in fourth position and with goals being scored from a number of players and not just the strikers, the blueprint for success may have been picked up from his old mentor.
Here are Mirror Football’s latest Arsenal headlines.
Merson admits Odegaard mistake
Martin Odegaard has shown why he was so highly sought after as a teenager before he made a sensational move to Real Madrid at just 15, and former Arsenal midfielder Paul Merson has admitted he was wrong about the playmaker’s talents.
Odegaard initially moved on loan to the Emirates Stadium last season and was signed on a permanent deal over the summer, going on to be a difference maker for the club as they look to return to the UEFA Champions League via a fourth-placed finish. On his arrival, Merson was unsure how the 23-year-old would adapt and believed the team needed more leaders.
But seeing the development of Odegaard under manager Mikel Arteta and the role he has played this season, Merson has changed his mind on the Norwegian star.
Arteta’s Ozil decision justified
Mesut Ozil’s time at Arsenal started off amid plenty of love both on and off the pitch from teammates and fans, who were enamoured with the talents of the German.
But by the end, Ozil was frozen out by boss Arteta as the Spaniard looked to take the team in a different direction and saw Ozil as a player who didn’t fit his plans going forward. Ozil left for Turkish side Fenerbache in Janauary 2021 and recent developments may have shown that Arteta was right to move on from the attacking midfielder.
Ozil is currently suspended from Fenerbache’s first team and is not permitted to return to matches or training for the foreseeable future.
Arteta following Pep’s plan
Mikel Arteta has proved many doubters wrong and has Arsenal in pole position to finish fourth and qualify for the UEFA Champions League next season.
Having worked directly under Man City boss Pep Guardiola before making the move to the Emirates Stadium, Arteta would have seen first-hand that there are many ways to build a successful team and it may look different to the norm. As City lead the league without a recognised striker, Arteta’s Arsenal have benefitted from goals being scored by a number of different players.
With a blueprint that Guardiola perfected, the Spaniard is now using that same vision in north London to the success of Arsenal and a possible return to the Champions League.