We all know that ‘new deal’ and ‘Arsenal signing’ headlines which fill the sports pages and NewNow need to be taken with a large pinch of salt but as the saying goes, sometimes there’s no smoke without a fire. Football London ran a story the other day which quoted Martin Ødegaard as telling a TV channel that he’d be open to staying at Arsenal. Of course he going to say that right now because he’s at the club and he’s after playing time. So far he’s barely had ninety minutes. Admittedly, he looks an exciting young player he’s qualities are yet to really be seen. But that’s exactly why he’s come to Arsenal on loan, to prove himself after being rejected by Zidane. His situation is very similar to Dani Ceballos, with both no doubt wondering if life at Real Madrid is over.
Dani Ceballos is 24 years old, his peak career should be now, or certainly within the next year or so and in all honesty, I thought he’d be one of the first names on Mikel Arteta’s team sheet this season after the way he played towards the end of last season but so far, he’s not really stood out. In fact it’s looking likely that Ødegaard will end the season with more playing time against his name. The Norwegian is two years younger than his Real Madrid teammate so the best of him is certainly yet to come. Or at least on paper it should be.
Not every footballer is a Cesc Fabregas, Bukayo Saka or ESR who have what it takes from a very early age. Jack Wilshere too just walked into the Arsenal team and took Premier League football like a duck to water but those/these kind of players are rare. When Arsenal get them, they have to do all they to hang onto them. I’m sure if Ødegaard does really well over the next three months, Arsenal will do all they can to keep hold of him too.
The club are certainly trying to tie Folarin Balogun to a new contract still. Mikel Arteta said just a day or two ago that the player wants to stay and the club want him to stay so all the time there’s no news about him agreeing a deal with another club, there’s hope.
I saw the ‘individual goals scored’ in the Premier League chart on Sky Sports yesterday. It’s concerning I think that our highest goal scorer is Alexandre Lacazette, level with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang with eight. Their total together is one less than Mo Salah who is in top spot. Our neighbours have two strikers, both have thirteen goals each. Our strikers stats wouldn’t look as bad if both were providing goals for others on a regular basis but according to that same chart, Lacazette has two assist to his name and Aubameyang, one.
Arsenal need to look at both the fullback positions as the summer transfer window approaches, I think we’d all agree with that. In my opinion the squad needs another player in a similar mould of Thomas Partey too but honestly, I don’t think Edu and Arteta can neglect what’s going up front either.
See you in the comments.