Odegaard on PFA Awards, and thoughts on Man Utd

Martin Odegaard at the PFA Awards

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 this afternoon's meeting with Manchester United, he discusses attending the PFA Awards in midweek, our tactical flexibility and his excitement at facing the Red Devils once again.

It was so good to be at the PFA Awards in Manchester on Tuesday evening with some of my teammates, Mikel, Edu and a lot of the guys from the club. To be recognised in the Team of the Year was special, because when it’s voted by the other players it’s something you appreciate even more. To have this honour and recognition means a lot.

That’s now three different leagues in which I’ve been voted into the Team of the Year – I also did it in Spain and the Netherlands – so I’m very proud of that. It’s not too bad! But for me, I was most pleased that we had four of us voted into the team. Myself, Aaron, Wilo and Bukayo were all included, so it shows how well we did as a team last season.

I think it’s the first time Arsenal have had four players in there for 15 years. That’s a great sign for the club and the way we are building here. It show we are taking steps as a team, but also on an individual level too.

As players, you can't vote for one of your teammates so I voted for Erling Haaland for the main award. I think he was the right winner after all those goals he scored in his first season in England. There were also two Arsenal players in the WSL Team of the Year, including Frida Maanum – so it was a good night for Arsenal and for Norwegian football too!

I believe this season we can play in a lot of different ways. We are more adaptable, more unpredictable and can do different things to last season. Last year we played the same system most of the time, but now with the depth of the squad and quality of our players we can mix it up more, and that should be a strength if we use it in the right way.

It’s always a big one against Manchester United, and we always love to play in these games, especially in front of our supporters here at the Emirates. I remember the game here last season so clearly – the atmosphere was incredible.

We’re excited to be back here and we know it will be another big test against United. They have a coach with a very clear idea of how he wants to play, what he wants from his team, and they will obviously be determined to kick on from last season too.

It looks as though they are improving all the time and they have quality players throughout the team, so it’s a very strong side, but we know just how important a win could be for us. 

Read the rest of Odegaard’s notes, as well as a host of other fantastic content, by buying a copy of the Arsenal v Manchester United programme either around the stadium or online

You can also subscribe to get every issue this season delivered straight to your door each matchday.

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