Odegaard: Our full focus is now on Aston Villa

Martin Odegaard during the game against Bayern Munich

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 clash with Aston Villa, Martin reflects on our Champions League quarter-final first leg against Bayern Munich, our defeat at Villa Park earlier in the season and lifts the lid on the mood in the camp during this relentless run of huge matches.

There were mixed feelings for us after the game on Tuesday night. For the way we played for most of the game and given how much of it we were able to control, I think we should have got the win. You know in the Champions League, playing against the big teams, you get punished for every mistake you make. That’s what we saw in that game, so that’s the level we are competing at, and that’s the quality these teams all have.

You cannot afford to make those mistakes in this competition, but despite that, we managed to get a result out of it, and it’s still all to play for when we go to Germany next week. We have a good feeling that we can win it there, we are confident, so overall it could have been better on Tuesday, but at the same time it could have been worse, so it’s not too bad.

To be honest though, right now all our focus is on facing Aston Villa today. It’s so close in the league, but all we can do is look at the next game, concentrate 100 per cent on what we have to do, and go out there to get the points. We need three points every time we play because that’s what the league is demanding right now. It’s so tight, so tough at the top and every game is crucial.

It’s a beautiful thing to be a part of right now, involved in all these big games at this important time of the season. Every game means so much, every game is crucial and it’s what everyone wants, being there and fighting for the big trophies. This is where we want to be, so we're enjoying it and embracing it.

We have painful memories of our game away to Aston Villa earlier this season, because we feel we deserved much more than we got. I think we played a pretty good game there, but without getting anything. We know we can definitely build on that to get the result today, and use that game as an extra motivation for us.

The spirit around Sobha Realty Training Centre and in the dressing room is so good right now, that we just can’t wait for the games to come. We are enjoying it every day, being around each other, with so much to work for. We enjoy playing together, we are pushing each other in every single training session and that transmits to the pitch as well. We are a team that enjoys being together.

We want to carry it on, build on what we are doing, and keep improving every day. That’s our challenge right now, and we are ready for it.

Read the rest of Martin's notes, as well as a host of other fantastic content, by buying a copy of the Arsenal v Aston Villa programme either around the stadium or online

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