Arsenal are set to switch focus from Leicester City’s James Maddison according to various reports. Maddison was thought to be Arsenal’s number one choice for a creative midfield position which has greatly affected Arsenal since Mesut Ozil was exiled from the team in controversial circumstance.
Arsenal and Leicester City are far from their valuation of the England International as the Foxes are demanding around £70 million for the attacking midfielder who joined the Foxes in the summer of 2018. Arsenal are now thought to be looking at other creative midfield players to fill that void in their attack.
Reports now have it that Real Madrid are open to selling Martin Odegaard for €40 million (£34m/$47m) this summer, with Arsenal poised to accelerate transfer talks after Joe Willock’s permanent move to Newcastle is confirmed.
Odegaard initially signed for Real from Norwegian outfit Stromsgodset as a 16-year-old back in 2015, but has since been restricted to just 11 first-team appearances for the club amid a flurry of loan spells.
The playmaker’s latest temporary move away from Santiago Bernabeu saw him join Arsenal on a six-month deal in January, and he made a big impact at Emirates Stadium, but his long-term future remains very much up in the air ahead of the 2021-22 campaign.
Odegaard returned to Madrid for the start of pre-season in July, and still has two years remaining on his contract with the Spanish giants, but has not been given any assurances about a regular role in Carlo Ancelotti’s set-up.
It is understood that the Blancos head coach will leave the 22-year-old out of his team’s La Liga opener against Alaves on Saturday, with the club now set to welcome any formal bids for the Norway international.
Arsenal are still very interested in signing Odegaard on a permanent basis, and will likely have the funds to meet Real’s asking price once Willock is sold to Newcastle.
Odegaard quickly became a key figure in Arteta’s line up upon his arrival at the Emirates, and finished his loan spell at the club with 20 appearances to his name.
The Norway international also recorded two goals and two assists, but was powerless to prevent the Gunners from finishing outside of the European qualification places for the first time in 25 years.