Martin Odegaard has told those close to him that he would like to stay at Arsenal beyond the end of this season football.london understands.
The Norwegian midfielder has impressed in the early parts of his loan spell from Real Madrid, scoring crucial goals against Olympiacos and Tottenham and was pivotal in the Gunners comeback from 3-0 down to salvage a point against West Ham last weekend.
There is no option to buy once his loan moves comes to an end this summer meaning that he will return to the Spanish capital as things stand.
However, it now seems as though the player’s desire is to stay in North London if possible.
The 22-year-old has spoken glowingly about his time with the Gunners so far and has been delighted with how quickly he has been accepted as part of the squad.
“I have felt at home since the first day,” he said after the 3-1 victory over Olympiacos in the Europa League Round of 16 first leg.
“I am happy to be here and I feel great so I’m very pleased to be a part of the team.”
However football.london understands that Odegaard will not try to force through a move to the Emirates in the summer if a suitable offer from Arsenal is not forthcoming.
The player has maintained that it is still a “big dream” of his to play for Real Madrid consistently.
“Yes, as I have said many times when you sign there, the goal is always to play there. It is of course a big dream,” Odegaard told TV2.
However, Odegaard did add: “But at the same time I am in a nice club and am very happy where I am now. So I am very happy with the situation as it is now.”
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The ball is now in the Gunners’ court with regards to whether they will make an offer for him at the end of the season.
The 22-year-old is a player Mikel Arteta likes, but having recently announced a loss of £47.8 million for the financial year 2019/20 it is unclear if the club will be able to afford what will likely now be a hefty fee.
The prospect of another loan move next season remains on the table for Arsenal as they seek to explore ways of securing players to improve the squad ahead of next season.