Arsenal remain interested in permanent Martin Odegaard deal

Matt O'Connor-Simpson
Odegaard is currently back with Real Madrid
Odegaard is currently back with Real Madrid / Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

Arsenal remain interested in signing Martin Odegaard from Real Madrid, although their principal transfer target is James Maddison.

Odegaard joined the club on loan last January and went on to make 20 appearances in all competitions, registering two goals and two assists.

Although his performances were mixed, the Gunners were suitably impressed and are considering signing him on a permanent basis this summer. According to football.london, although Odegaard is keen to fight for his place under new Real manager Carlo Ancelotti, the club are open to the idea of selling him towards the end of the transfer window.

The Norway international has only made a handful of appearances for Los Blancos' first team since arriving as a teenager back in 2015. That is despite impressing during previous loan spells at Vitesse Arnhem and Real Sociedad.

If the pathway to the senior side remains blocked, Odegaard might be convinced to return to the Premier League.

Although the Gunners' interest is genuine, he is not Mikel Arteta's first choice. Instead, Arsenal remain eager to complete a deal for Maddison. The Gunners have already sounded out the possibility of signing him through intermediaries but negotiations are not expected to be straightforward.

The Foxes value Maddison - who is one of their key players - at around £60m. In the past Leicester have refused to be pushed around by the Premier League's so-called 'Big Six', selling Danny Drinkwater and Ben Chilwell to Chelsea for big money. They also received a world record fee from Manchester United for Harry Maguire in 2019.

James Maddison
Maddison is on Arsenal's radar / Visionhaus/Getty Images

Maddison still has three years left to run on his current deal and Arsenal's lack of European football further weakens their bargaining position. Leicester, meanwhile, are set to play in the Europa League next season after missing out on Champions League qualification on the final day - again.