Arsenal legend Alan Smith has warned the Gunners that their bid to sign Martin Odegaard could end up being an “embarrassment”, like their deal to loan Denis Suarez from Barcelona. Arsenal are set to conclude a deal to bring Odegaard to the Emirates until the end of the season.
Arsenal are set to secure their second loan deal of the season, with Odegaard set to jet into London in the coming days.
The Norwegian youngster is set to become an immediate replacement for Mesut Ozil, who has joined Fenerbahce after being exiled under Mikel Arteta.
He’ll be the second midfielder Arsenal have signed from Real Madrid, with Dani Ceballos still at the club until the end of the season.
And it’ll be the third time the club has moved to sign a midfielder from La Liga in the last three seasons, having loaned Suarez from Barca two years ago.
The young Spaniard’s move wasn’t too successful, however, and he only played four times for the first-team despite lofty expectations.
And Smith is cautious that Odegaard doesn’t follow in his footsteps.
Speaking to Stadium Astro, via the Metro, the club icon explained that Arsenal can’t afford to make any mistakes in the transfer market.
He warned that just because there’s hype around Odegaard, there’s no guarantee that he’ll hit the ground running in his short-term loan spell.
“So it’s that kind of player that can make the difference against a deep-lying defence that’s defending in numbers.
“I wouldn’t be expecting him to start many games, somebody that would just dip in and out perhaps.
“But Arsenal have almost got one hand tied behind their back because financially they can’t throw money at it so they’ve got to be fairly creative in getting these loans in. Ceballos has been brought in from Real Madrid, they’ve got that relationship.
“Ceballos has done well during his time at the Emirates I think so hopefully Odegaard could come and he’s got a point to prove and he could add something to what they’ve got.”