Mikel Arteta lauds Martin Odegaard’s performance vs Leicester City
Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta was full of praise for Martin Odegaard following the club’s 2-0 Premier League win over Leicester City on Sunday.
The Gunners secured a fifth-straight league triumph yesterday after goals from Thomas Partey and Alexandre Lacazette, the latter scoring from the penalty spot.
The Foxes were barely a threat in the final third, but goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale was on guard to make a vital save in the 36th minute when the momentum was shifting.
Partey had a superb game for Arsenal with the opening goal while also contributing to the penalty won. The Ghanaian also had a shot which rattled the crossbar.
Despite his stand-out showing, Odegaard was adjudged the man of the match, and there were no surprises, considering he produced another lively performance.
The £37.8m-rated star has grown in confidence since becoming a regular starter in December. He was at the top of his game yesterday with his work rate and distribution.
The 23-year-old created six key passes for his teammates, three more than what the Foxes afforded. He also won three tackles and six ground and aerial duels.
It was a superb all-round display from the Gunners’ summer signing. Following the game, Arteta was delighted for him and believes he is showing ‘great maturity and responsibility’.
He told Arsenal.com: “He was terrific again today in every aspect of the game, what he had to do in defending, when we were high, when we were deep, in build-up phases, in the final third.”
“The way he understands and manages the game when needed. I think he’s come a long way since his arrival, he’s showing great maturity and responsibility on the pitch and he makes the other players better I think.”
Odegaard had a terrific December where he made six goal contributions from as many games. He has just one goal since the turn of the year, but has been superb with his build-up play.
His ability to initiate counter-attacks from deeper positions has particularly caught the eye. He could still be selfish sometimes by trying to score himself rather than looking for a teammate.
Arsenal have jumped back to the fourth spot after yesterday’s win. They are currently one point ahead of Manchester United, who have played three games more than them.
They have the chance to extend the gap in their rescheduled fixture against Liverpool in midweek. It could be a big test of their credentials against the most in-form English club this year.