TalkSPORT pundit Darren Bent says he would keep Arsenal captain Martin Odegaard even if he had the opportunity to “swap” him for Jude Bellingham.
The England international has been ripping things up since joining Real Madrid in the summer but Bent insists that he wouldn’t sacrifice Odegaard if there was a chance to sign the teenager:
“Bellingham? I love him, I love him. But the question that was put to me in the pre-show planning meeting was, would I swap Odegaard for him. And no, I’m not swapping our captain, one of our influential players. Right at this particular moment, I’d keep Odegaard, thank you.”
As Bent points out, Odegaard has been extremely influential in attack for the Gunners; especially since the start of last season.
Over the past 13 months, the 24-year-old has scored 17 goals and provided 8 assists in 41 Premier League games, with his team winning 28 and losing just six times.
Odegaard has stepped up in big games
As recently as last weekend, the club captain’s importance to the Gunners was demonstrated, as he scored the equaliser during the 3-1 win over Manchester United.
Last month, Odegaard took responsibility to slot away the winning penalty against Crystal Palace, and there are multiple examples of him taking games by the scruff of the neck last campaign as well.
The midfielder’s brace versus Wolves in November last year was a particular highlight, as was his two goals against Chelsea back in May.
Arsenal will be keen to tie Odegaard down to a new contract
The Norwegian international has just under two years remaining on his current deal at the Emirates and it is believed the Gunners are locked in talks with the player’s representatives over an extension.
Considering Odegaard’s importance, fans will be hoping that he commits his long-term future to the club very soon.