Arsenal are set to make a formal offer for Martin Odegaard after the Norwegian signalled his intent to leave Real Madrid, football.london understands.
football.london revealed in June that Arsenal want to sign Odegaard after his short loan spell at Emirates Stadium.
Mikel Arteta and Edu’s shortlist of players includes Leicester midfielder James Maddison, whose asking price of £60million plus add-ons can only be reached after the Gunners make player sales.
Those sales have been hard to come by this summer with Joe Willock the only first-team player to leave on a permanent transfer, completing his £25million move to Newcastle on Friday.
Arteta confirmed towards the end of last season that the club want to sign Odegaard, after he scored two goals and made two assists in his five-month loan spell.
Speaking on the final day of the season, Arteta said:
“We have a very clear and strong opinion on what we would like to do.
“He’s not our player. We’ll have discussions in the next few weeks, but first of all we need to respect that he’s a Real Madrid player.
“We’ll have those communications. We’ve tried to make everything that we could to get Martin performing for the team, which I think he’s done.
“He has adapted really well to our way of playing and to our football. Hopefully we have given him the hope and the feeling this could be a good place for him.
“[Confident Odegaard will stay?] I don’t know. It’s not in our hands, I don’t know.”
Odegaard is unlikely to get regular game time under new Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti and the Norway captain will be guaranteed minutes under his belt at Emirates Stadium.
It’s not expected that Odegaard will be a part of the Real Madrid squad that plays away to La Liga side Alaves on Saturday night.
Meanwhile, the Gunners are looking to make more signings before transfer deadline day on August 31.
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The transfer window is in full swing and things are beginning to ramp up with Edu and Mikel Arteta’s dealings at the Emirates.
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A back-up goalkeeper is also wanted with Barcelona’s Neto and Newcastle shot stopper Freddie Woodman among the potential targets.
Hector Bellerin’s future remains uncertain with Arsenal yet to offer the Spaniard a new contract, while the likes of Lucas Torreira and Sead Kolasinac could leave before the window closes.