Odegaard on Marbella, last season and more

Martin Odegaard headshot

Martin Odegaard recently spoke to the media about all things Arsenal, from his reflections on last season to pre-season training in Marbella.

Here is everything he had to say on the following subjects…

on working hard in Marbella during the summer:

The summer has been good. I’m obviously disappointed not to be in the Euros, so it’s been a bit strange to watch the games, but I’ve had some more time to relax and disconnect and I think I needed that after a long season and all the emotions that come with it. We’re here now to start preparing for a big season. It’s a nice place to come to train and work and a good way to start the season to work towards the big goal of being even better than last season.

on last season:

First of all it was a good season. We made history and we have to be proud of that, but it wasn’t enough to win it and that’s what we wanted to do, so we all felt a bit disappointed with being so close. In football there are small margins. It’s easy to look at one game but I think you have to look at the whole season. We didn’t have the consistency to win it and we have to earn it and we know we can improve, get better and that’s what we’re working on. We were so close but we’re going to come back even stronger now I’m sure.


on the mentality of the team:

You learn something every day, especially when you’re so close and you can taste it on the last day. It gives us all the motivation we need to come back even stronger this year and win it. If you compare last season to the season before, we looked a lot stronger, especially towards the end. We looked a lot more mature and confident and we had a really good ending, so I think we’re taking a lot of good steps but we just need a little bit more to win it.

Every setback can make you stronger. For us to be talking about last season as a disappointment shows how far we’ve come and what we’re all about now. It shows the mentality that we’re not satisfied if we don’t win.

on how we can do better next season:

That’s the work we put in every day. The work ethic and mentality in the team and how connected and aligned we are, we’re all thinking about the same thing. We want to win something and get better. We’re a young team as well so I’m sure that experience and another year is going to help us. It’s easy to find the motivation because we all want to win and we’re pushing each other so hard every day. Staff, players, supporters and everyone are pushing in the same direction. In the end I’m sure it’s going to be rewarded with a trophy.

on recharging:

I wanted to be in the Euros and I’m disappointed that we didn’t qualify, so I’d prefer to be there but that’s the situation. Rest is always good with the amount of intense games we play and how tough it is to play football at the biggest stage. It’s really demanding so it’s a good thing to get some rest, but I would prefer to be there and play.


on the start of the season:

It’s always important to get a good start and feeling straight away. The work we put in now is going to help us a lot to come back fit and sharp and be ready. You have to push and prepare in the best possible way.

on handling the end of last season as a young captain:

Just after the game, it was a bit flat and empty because we had the big dream. We were so close on the last day and I really had the feeling that something special was going to happen and I think a lot of people did. At the same time, it’s important to think about all the good things and the history and progress we made. I’m so proud to be a part of this, to be a captain. We’re so connected as a team and club. It was emotional to speak at the end of the season but a nice experience to share with the fans.

on switching off from football:

It’s hard and takes some time to really switch off, but that’s important as well, to disconnect from the football world a little bit. It’s always on your mind. After a week or two I started to work again.

Family, friends and being outside of football help me switch off. Being with people I love and doing things I can’t normally do like travelling, it’s good to do different stuff.


on consistency:

It’s hard work. We were struggling a little bit before Christmas but then we had a break and went away and got more together as a team and came back so strong. The aim for us now is to do it throughout the whole season. It takes a lot but we’re ready to take that next step and push for. It’s a joy to be a part of this team and everyone feels the same.

on taking risks while playing:

It’s really important when you play football to not think too much. You have to think about all the tactical things we do on the pitch, but it’s a lot of instinct as well and I think it’s important to play with freedom and have that feeling that you can feel the situation and do what’s right. It’s easier playing in a system that works so well. We’re so well trained with it and everybody knows it so well. Then it’s easier for players to shine individually.

It always takes a little bit of time for new players to adapt, but I think they did really well from the start. You saw throughout the whole season how we connected more and more and I’m sure this season is going to be even better.

on being part of a team in their mid-20s:

With age, you feel like you have more experience and are more prepared. That’s a good thing. I’m still young but feel like I’m getting older. There are a lot of young players in the team and I kind of like being one of the older players who can use experience in the best way. You feel more responsible and feel like you’re reaching your peak. Hopefully there’s a lot more to come but you want to push to reach your max level.


on the transfer window:

I’m really happy with the squad we have. We have unbelievable quality and showed what we’re capable of, especially towards the end of the season with how well we played. It’s down to Mikel, Edu and the club to sort those things.

on goals from midfield:

Players in my position want to score goals and get assists, so it’s important we all contribute. Last season we had a lot of different goalscorers.

on Kai Havertz settling in:

It’s one of the strengths Mikel has, to get the best out of everyone. As a group we help each other a lot. It’s easier to play in a team that is always helping you to perform. Everyone knows the different qualities of each player.

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