Martin Odegaard

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Odegaard reportedly chooses two-year loan at Real Sociedad

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Martin Odegaard was linked with an upgrade from the Eredivisie to the Bundesliga, but is hoping to give Real Madrid a close-up look with his third loan stint in as many seasons.

Not 21 until December, the once “next big thing” finally had a breakout campaign last season when he scored 11 goals and added 12 assists in 39 matches on loan from Vitesse.

[ MORE: France-USWNT recap | Player ratings ]

It was another step up after a decent but unspectacular loan stint at Heerenveen the previous season, and he reportedly turned down interest from Ajax in order to make his latest move.

So now it’ll be a move to La Liga despite links to Bayer Leverkusen, a German club who would’ve provided Champions League football to the playmaker.

Real Sociedad is the club in question and it’s a two-year loan for La Liga’s ninth place club last season. Odegaard will be managed by Basque Country mainstay Imanol Alguacil.

Odegaard has a goal and two assists in 18 caps for Norway. This is a big chance for him to impress Real, or impress someone else to make a big offer for the boy who once caused a bidding war amongst Europe’s biggest clubs at age 15.

Transfer rumor roundup: Many circle around Real Madrid

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Given the major buys of Real Madrid this summer, it’s no surprise that clubs are trying to take advantage of La Liga’s giants need to sell talent.

While Gareth Bale‘s future is the target of many transfer reports, there are many other pieces destined to move away from the Bernabeu.

Real has been tempting Financial Fair Player this summer, backing up the armored cars to the banks of Chelsea (Eden Hazard), Eintracht Frankfurt (Luka Jovic), and Eder Militao (Porto) amongst others.

AS says that AC Milan is asking about Dani Ceballos, Mariano Díaz and Martin Ødegaard.

The 25-year-old Diaz cost Madrid more than $22 million to buy back from Lyon last summer after an 18-goal Ligue 1 season in his only season away from Real. He scored three times in limited minutes last season, and has said he wants to prove himself at Real despite a link to Fenerbahce.

Odegaard’s recruitment was an exhaustive journey that ultimately landed him at Real. Now 20 with 18 Norway caps, Odegaard has made just one senior appearance for Real since choosing the Madrid side after his time at Stromsgodset. He posted eight goals and 11 assists for Vitesse in the Eredivisie last season.

Ceballos turns 23 in August, and scored a career-high three goals this season. His best position is unclear, but the six-times capped Spanish international has a Champions League crown and a U-21 EURO Player of the Tournament award.

The trio could earn Real somewhere in the neighborhood of $80 million, though, and Ceballos has been linked with Spurs while Odegaard linked with another loan (Bayer Leverkusen, another step in his progression).

Real is said to be willing to give Spurs a good fee, $57 million, and Ceballos in exchange for Christian Eriksen. That would not help the FFP argument, but would make a certain amount of sense to Tottenham should they value Ceballos.

Eriksen posted eight goals and 12 assists in Premier League play, adding two and four in the Champions League. He won’t turn 28 until February.

Odegaard leaves Real Madrid for another Eredivisie loan

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Four years ago, Martin Odegaard was perhaps the most coveted wonderkid in the world of soccer.

[ MORE: Pogba’s agent hits back at critics, dares Man United to sell Pogba ]

Today, nearly 48 months after joining Real Madrid as a 16-year-old, Odegaard has made more loan moves away from the club (2) than first-team starts (1 – 2016, in the Copa del Rey round of 32). The Norwegian has not yet made his La Liga debut.

Madrid announced on Tuesday that the 19-year-old has joined Eredivisie side Vitesse on a season-long loan. Odegaard most recently spent a season and a half on loan to Heerenveen, eighth-place finishers in the Dutch first division last season. He scored three goals in 38 league appearances over 18 months.

[ MORE: Klopp: “Nobody thinks about” $100-million Van Dijk fee anymore ]

“The past year and a half I have played in the Eredivisie,” Odegaard said upon joining Vitesse. “I was impressed by Vitesse. I got to know Vitesse as a good footballing team, with an offensive and dominant view of the game. I think that way of playing is good for me. Vitesse has also shown that it gives young players a chance. That is why I am happy with the opportunity that Vitesse offers me.”

Norwegian whizkid Odegaard leaving Real Madrid on loan
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Martin Odegaard’s whirlwind recruitment has yielded little for Real Madrid, who Tuesday shipped the youngster on loan to Heerenveen.

The loan is an 18-month deal, giving Odegaard the opportunity to get first team minutes in the Netherlands.

Odegaard posted a five-goal, six-assist season as a 15-year-old for Stromsgodset in Norway. He was the youngest player to ever win a cap for Norway (15).

[ MORE: Schneiderlin off to Everton ]

That helped trigger massive recruitment pitch from teams across the Premier League, Bundesliga, La Liga, and more.

Real Madrid won his signature, but life was anything but peachy. He’s made few appearances for the First Team, and this year saw him only appear in a Copa del Rey match versus a lower league side.

USMNT captain Michael Bradley played for Heerenveen at age 19, while Bas Dost, Ruud van Nistelrooy, Will Johnson, and Klaas-Jan Huntelaar have also spent time with De Superfriezen.

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Odegaard cracks Real Madrid’s UEFA Champions League squad list

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In a bit of a surprise, Martin Odegaard has made Real Madrid’s UEFA Champions League squad list.

The 17-year-old Norwegian attacker was the object of a bidding war when he decided to leave Stromsgodset, but has struggled to break into the Real Madrid team (as do most players, let alone 16-17 year-olds).

[ MORE: How will USMNT lineup Tuesday? ]

Odegaard had a goal and 7 assists for Real Madrid Castilla last season in Segunda B play but did not feature for the big club. The previous season, he saw 37 minutes over two games for Real Madrid.

Apparently he’s matured a bunch from the kid who was dropped from the B side in 2015 for a failure to show proper commitment. Let’s hope to see some of those silky skills continue to evolve into a full player.