How Martin Odegaard revived his career

Remember the name? The Norwegian midfielder who moved to Real Madrid as a teenager, earning £80,000 a week and hailed a generational talent. He made his big move to Los Blancos in 2015.

He’s been out of the headlines for the last few years, many assuming he’d fallen into obscurity. But Martin Odegaard is back and better than ever, living up to the ‘generational talent’ tag he was cursed with four years ago. 

Odegaard spend two years in Real Madrid’s B team, Real Madrid Castilla. He scored just five goals in 58 league games across two seasons. At 17 years old Odegaard went out on loan to Heerenveen in the Eredivise, but he only managed 3 goals in 40 league games for the Dutch side in the 2017/18 season. 

The young midfielder was loaned out yet again to the Netherlands, spending the 2018/19 season with Vitesse. This was where Odegaard really upped his game as he ended last season with 11 goals and 12 assists in all competitions.

He was so impressive that the Real Madrid manager at the time Santiago Solari, ‘begged the club to recall Martin Odegaard from his loan’. Considering the talent Real Madrid have in midfield, this shows exactly how great Odegaard was at Vitesse. 

His performances for Vitesse didn’t convince Zinedine Zidane to put Odegaard in the Real Madrid first team, but they did award him with a loan move to La Liga side Real Sociedad in the summer. Since his arrival he’s been nothing short of spectacular, proving to the world exactly why he was hailed a generational talent back in 2015 at 16-years-old.

Five goal contributions in 11 games from central midfield. Odegaard’s dribbling and control is fantastic and his passing and movement has come on leaps and bounds since his time in Real Madrid Castilla. The Norwegian’s performances have helped Real Sociedad reach third in La Liga so far this season, behind only Barcelona and Real Madrid. 

Expect to see Martin Odegaard continue to shine for the rest of the La Liga season. If he continues to perform, he may be given a chance to break into the Real Madrid first team. With an ageing squad, it looks very likely the 20-year-old will get a chance to kickstart his career in the Spanish capital. 

Sub-edited by Ciaran Coyle

This image of Martin Odegaard was taken by Luis Fernandez and complies with the Creative Commons License.

The image of the Santiago Bernabeu was taken by uggboy and complies with the Creative Commons License.

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