Martin Ødegaard (23) has emerged as a key player for Arsenal in December. Erik Thorstvedt thinks the national team captain looks more comfortable and offensive.
It is true that December started badly for Arsenal, with two losses, but Martin Ødegaard has during the month shown some of the qualities that made Arsenal buy him this summer. In six games, he stands with three goals and one goal-scoring pass, and the Norwegian has been central behind much of what Arsenal has created.
– It has been very good. You look so clearly at Martin when he just goes for it. When he just throws all the links, shit in the consequences and “gunner” a little on. Then he is enormously good, says TV 2’s football expert, Erik Thorstvedt, to VG.
– He has shown the offensive mindset a lot lately, and contributed with goals and what is actually the season’s first assist in the match against Leeds last weekend. It is not his that it was the first, because he has served others on silver plates before, but it was certainly nice to get the great assist to Smith-Rowe, says Thorstvedt.
Thorstvedt thinks Ødegaard has also shown the same beats before, but sums up:
– This is by far the best period he has had in England. He has played well in matches over time, according to the former Norwegian national team goalkeeper.
– I have said before that he can tolerate several mismatches, and that he must not be afraid to make a mistake. In the position he plays, you just have to shit on it. To succeed, you must dare to fail, says Thorstvedt.
And right there, he thinks he now sees a far more offensive Ødegaard than before.
– He looks very comfortable, and has a very offensive mindset, an offensive body language and is more forward-looking, Thorstvedt believes.
He is supported by Ronny Madsen, leader of Arsenal’s Norwegian supporter club, Arsenal Norway.
– I think the main reason why Ødegaard performs the way he does is trust. Now he is close to what he achieved in Real Sociedad. It was about trust, well-being and the right role. You can see that Ødegaard is leaning forward, in contrast to earlier in the season where most things went across or backwards. Now he pushes joints or plays through joints more often. The positive is that the care percentage has decreased in relation to lending last year. There are signs that he is taking greater chances, Madsen believes.
Liverpool’s showdown against Leeds has been postponed
Earlier this week, Arsenal reached the semi-finals of the League Cup, after beating Sunderland 5-1 at home.
In an interview with Viaplay after the match, Ødegaard boasted of a “hungry” group of players, who want to go up and down.
– I feel it flows very well now. I feel I’m in good shape. I feel like we’ve figured it out with the team here. We know each other better and better. You see that out on the field. I thrive very well, he told Viaplay.
VG-tips: Norwich City – Arsenal
- Norwich got a hope with two victories in early November, but since then things have gone well for Mathias Normann’s club. The last three games have all ended in losses and Norwich have only scored one goal in the last five games in the Premier League. Arsenal have struggled against the top teams this season, but have been good otherwise.
- The London Club stands with three straight victories in the Premier League and advanced to the semi-finals of the League Cup on Tuesday. With five days between matches and a reserve team in the quarterfinals, that match should not come into play in any way – other than being a new positive experience. Norwich beat Arsenal in the first round of Premier League history in 1992, but since Arsenal won 11 of 19 matches between the teams in all competitions, while Norwich have won only one (in 2012).
- Our game: Arsenal win at 1.40 in odds. Play stop is 15.59, and the match will be shown on TV 2 Sport Premium and TV 2 Play.