August 18, (THEWILL) – English Premier League side Arsenal are finalising a deal to bring Real Madrid midfielder Martin Odegaard back to the Emirates on a permanent five-year deal for a fee of between £30m and £34m, although nothing has been finalised at the moment.
Given the injury to first team midfielder Thomas Partey in the Sunday, August 1 friendly against Chelsea, Arsenal are hoping to get the deal done in time for Odegaard to take Partey’s place in the Sunday, August 22 fixture against Chelsea at the Emirates.
However, it will be a lot of work to pull that off because for him to feature, Odegaard will have to be registered as a Gunner by noon on Friday. It is comforting for Arsenal that there have been a significant breakthrough in their negotiations for the Norwegian’s transfer but no certainty if they can beat the Friday deadline.
The 22-year-old, who spent the second half of last season on loan at the Emirates, joined Real Madrid in 2015, but had found it difficult commanding a permanent shirt. He has managed only eight league appearances for the Spanish side while spending the rest of the time on loans to Heerenveen, Vitesse and Real Sociedad before the spell with Arsenal last season.
As a Gunner, Odegaard made 20 appearances and scored two goals in all competitions for Mikel Arteta’s side last season but integrated so well, Arteta made it clear at the end of last season that he wanted the Norwegian to return to the Emirates on a permanent basis.
In Partey’s absence, Odegaard’s return will be beneficial as he will not need time to integrate with the system he is already familiar with and can hit the ground running in no time. Arteta will favour that given Arsenal’s next pair of games are against UEFA Champions Chelsea and UEFA finalists and England Champions Manchester City.
When finalised, Odegaard will be the third Arsenal signing after Ben White, Albert Sambi Lokonga and Nuno Tavares moved to the Emirates in the summer transfer season.