Monday, April 24, 2017

Zidane: Odegaard needs regular football

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 8 Aug 2016

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Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane has indicated it would be in Martin Odegaard’s best interest to play more regular first-team football.

The Norway international joined Madrid from Stromsgodset in January 2015 at the tender age of 16, but has been struggling to live up to the high expectations at the Santiago Bernabeu.

Odegaard, now 17, has made just one competitive appearance for Madrid and recent reports have suggested he could be on his way out in this transfer window.

Liverpool and Hamburg have been credited with an interest in signing the attacking midfielder and Zidane has hinted Madrid could allow him to leave, potentially flagging a loan for the promising teenager. 

“Odegaard is at Madrid, has been doing pre-season with us and I am satisfied with him,” Zidane said at a news conference.

“But the idea we have for him is that he gets playing time and it is very difficult to get playing time at Madrid because we have a lot of players. That is my advice to him.

“We will make a decision that is best for him. Anything can happen until the end of the month.”

Madrid have been linked with Andre Gomes and Paul Pogba in recent months, but missed out on both, with the Portugal international joining Barcelona and the latter set to sign for Manchester United.

Nevertheless, Zidane is not overly worried and is adamant he already has plenty of options in midfield.

“I am very happy with the players I have,” he added.

“I already have a lot of players in midfield and I will not be asking for another midfielder. I would not know how to fit all of them in. That’s a coach’s problem. All my players are important.”

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