Martin Odegaard has been a significant figure in Danish society since he made history as the youngest player to represent his local team Strmsgodset in the Tippeligaen at the age of 15.
Martin Odegaard is one of the few players who may have “burst onto the scene” in the world of football. These days, the expression is used far too frequently.
When he was just 13 years old, the explosive Norwegian playmaker with age-defying potential began practicing with more seasoned players.
Two years later, at the age of 15, he made history for his hometown team Strmsgodset by coming off the bench in a league match for the first team.
It attracted the
The entire footballing community looked to be interested, with numerous European powerhouses now firmly focused on the port city of Drammen, Norway, to see what all the buzz was about.
The fact that a baby-faced boy with at least one more year of school left was in charge of their midfield surprised the home fans, but it wasn’t surprising to those who knew him well.
Mirror Football recorded exclusive interviews with two prominent members of the Strmsgodset hierarchy who witnessed Odegaard’s meteoric rise to football superstardom.The club’s chief executive officer, Magne Jordan Nilsen, detailed the moment he recognized the current Arsenal player was unlike any other young talent he had ever seen.
He was 15 years old when he joined us for preseason in Marbella, and he played as a 6 in the center of the field against a Hungarian team.”Martin, who was only 15 years old at the time, dominated the game. “This is something we have just witnessed, and it is something we will never see again in our lifetimes,” the coaches and players said.”I didn’t want to inform anyone because they were going to sign him right away,” Nilsen joked.He demonstrated superstar-level play at the age of 15.Rune Marthinsen, Strmsgodset’s marketing manager, emphasized how popular Odegaard was even two years ago.”I first noticed how talented he was when he made his [non-competitive] debut at the age of 13.”When he was 13, we had sponsors who wanted to sign him. I doubt many people in Drammen had heard of him, but Diadora, Adidas, and Nike were all interested in him.“Martin was something that no one had ever seen in Norway before.”Marthinsen claims he made the transition from preseason friendly to top-flight league games without incident.It was probably his fourth or fifth game for us, and he made a joke of a 37-year-old mountain of a man, scoring twice. It was a fantastic game and experience for all of us.
Odegaard drew attention from bigger stars, which was unusual for young players from lesser-known clubs. As far as I know, we had 63 emails from abroad teams, including Bayern Munich, Dortmund, Liverpool, and everyone else. He was probably 14 or 15 years old at the time.Nilsen went on to remark that, despite being in the spotlight at the moment, adolescent Odegaard remained unmoved.
“The thing that drew so much attention was that it was Barcelona, Bayern Munich, Liverpool, Arsenal, some Italian teams – every top team in Europe.” The most astounding aspect of Martin’s technical talent, though, was his and his family’s ability to remain grounded.”He was on the cover of every paper here every day, the media was at their house knocking on the door,” said one reporter.The secret was that he kept his cool and focused on improving as a player.Despite being bought with the intention of developing, it took him 679 days after his arrival to make his Real Madrid senior squad debut.
He had four loan spells while at the Santiago Bernabeu, but it was the final one that would revitalize his failing career.Odegaard eventually agreed to a loan transfer with Premier League giants Arsenal in January 2021, where he excelled throughout his six-month trial period.So much so that Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta was anxious to bring him back on a permanent basis. In August of last year, the Spaniard finally achieved his desire.
Odegaard joined the company on a permanent basis in 2016 and hasn’t looked back since. According to Nilsen, he is already among the best in England.
Martin is today one of the Premier League’s best midfielders, but it’s difficult to tell what would have occurred if he had gone directly to Arsenal.
Odegaard, who is only 23 years old, has already seen things that most people would struggle to squeeze into a single career.
He’s dealt with the attention that comes with being a teenage wunderkind, he’s debunked suggestions that he was a failure when things didn’t work out in Spain, and he’s presently leading Arsenal’s charge for the top four.
Perhaps it has less to do with the harsh treatment he occasionally received in Madrid and more to do with the amount of love he receives in north London.