Every home game, Martin Odegaard gives you his thoughts on the goings-on around the club in his captain’s notes for the matchday programme.
Ahead of our meeting with Burnley, Martin discusses coming up against a familiar face, how he's dealt with missing matches and the leaders who have stepped up in his place.
We play our last game before the international break today, and we’ve seen already this season the benefit of being able to go into that period on the back of a good win. That’s our aim today of course, and we know we will have to be right on our game to get the win.
I saw a lot of Burnley last season in the Championship, and they were really impressive. It’s true that they have found it more difficult in the Premier League, but we know they have quality players and a good manager, and every single team in this league will cause problems if we drop our level even slightly.
They have got a midfielder I know very well from the national team, Sander Berge. I have known him for a long time now, in fact, we played together in the under-15s for Norway, so he is a close friend. I’ve known him for about 10 years, so it will be interesting to be against him on the pitch.
When you know somebody well like that, I’m not sure it makes much difference on the pitch. The analysis is so good now, that our coaches always have us prepared as if we know all of our opponents anyway! It will be nice to see him again though, and hopefully I’m the one heading to the internationals with the bigger smile.
It’s been really frustrating for me to miss the last couple of games, and also that last league game here, the 5-0 win over Sheffield United. Bukayo took the armband for that game – the first time he’s been Arsenal captain I think – and we can all see that he is adding leadership to his long list of qualities.
I’ve seen it for a while to be honest, I’m not surprised he’s developing like this. I’m really happy for him, because he deserves it. I think he’s a bit like me in that he’s not the one who shouts the most, or the loudest one in the dressing room. But he’s so intelligent, he’s always available, he gives everything for the team and he’s taking more and more responsibility on and off the pitch. He really deserves to be there as one of the captains, I’m proud of him and happy to have him as a teammate, because he’s a great player and also a great person.
What’s good about this group is the number of leaders we have. Jorginho has been captain for the last couple of games too, and he’s got so much experience and respect among the team. That’s nothing new to him, and it’s so good for the manager that he has these leaders to call upon in the squad.
Read the rest of Martin's notes, as well as a host of other fantastic content, by buying a copy of the Arsenal v Burnley programme either around the stadium or online
You can also subscribe to get every issue this season delivered straight to your door each matchday.
Copyright 2023 The Arsenal Football Club Limited. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source.