Arsenal

Edu’s 35m Arsenal gamble proves a bargain amid Kevin De Bruyne and Bruno Fernandes comparison

Football.London

Martin Odegaard has been exceptional for Arsenal this season after signing in the summer. His excellent performances have been proven by his impressive chance creation statistics.

The Norwegian ranked fourth in the Premier League for the most chances created this season, which is a testament to his importance in Mikel Arteta’s team. Only Trent Alexander-Arnold, Bruno Fernandes, and Kevin De Bruyne created more opportunities for their teammates across the campaign.

It is even more impressive when you consider the fact that Arsenal had only scored 61 goals during the season, with Arteta not always opting for the most free-flowing attacking system. But still, Odegaard managed to create enough chances which ranks him amongst the best in the Premier League.

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The 23-year-old created 76 chances in the Premier League this season, with Alexander-Arnold creating 89 chances, and both De Bruyne and Fernandes creating 88. This is very good bracket of players to be amongst, and it highlights the correct decision by Arteta to sign him the summer transfer window despite the concerns by the fan base.

The Norway international has been crucial to Mikel Arteta’s side’s improved build-up play this season. He has been a key factor behind why the club can boast the fourth-highest expected goals in the league last season.

The inability to create chances at the start of the season was a critical problem for the Gunners, who failed to score in each of their opening three games. However, since Odegaard’s £30million (with potential add-ons) move to the club in late August, Arteta’s side have become one of the most creative sides in the league and the Norwegian’s creativity had been a key reason for the Gunners finding themselves in the race to to qualify for the Champions League ahead of next season, which they ultimately failed to do.

And it is not just Odegaard’s creativity that makes him an untouchable player in Arteta’s starting XI but also his off-the-ball work and his ability to lead the team’s press that makes him so important. This was also highlighted by Arteta’s decision to make him captain during the injury absence of Kieran Tierney.

Despite the number of chances Odegaard creates, he still only has four assists. But that is more down to the …

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