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Written by Martin Graham | May 10, 2022

Martin Odegaard has expressed his desire to join the Champions League again after playing in competition with Real Madrid.

The 23-year-old Norwegian joined Real Madrid at the age of 16 and has made a few appearances for the 13-time winners and title holders. However, a number of loan spells away from the club never gave him the chance to be part of the full experience of the competition.

Ødegaard and Arsenal are currently on the right track to return to Europe’s premier club competition. His impressive performance has made a huge contribution to the Gunners cause as they seek to return to competition for the first time since 2017, and possibly start another round of back-to-back playoffs.

All they have to do is beat their north London rivals Tottenham Hotspur at Tottenham Hotspur this weekend and that will secure their place in the Champions League. The loss means they have to come down to the wire to confirm their place in the championship next season.

Ødegaard, who is only one of the few players in the current Arsenal squad to have played Champions League football, is eager to savor European nights once again. “I played there a few games but I don’t feel like I really played there,” he said.

“I really want to get in there and fight. That’s where the best teams want to be of course so that’s big for me and the club.

“We have a young team but I think with our young players we have a lot of experience as well.

“We have been through a lot and we just enjoy playing football together and you can see that on the pitch. We are enjoying it.”

Meanwhile, Arsenal could see their plans to lure winger Michael Ulis away from Crystal Palace to fail.

The Eagles understand the importance of the youngster, who joined them only this season from Reading club for the championship and went on to score four times and assisted eight goals in 31 games.

Olise was valued at £35m at Crystal Palace with five years remaining on his contract. The palace now wants to get him to sign an extension in order to raise his value and chase suitors.

Athletic claim that the new deal will add one year to his existing deal to extend his contract until 2026.

The report also claims Olise is willing to stay and develop at Crystal Palace for a few more years, which throws a wrench in the works at Arsenal to sign him.

Martin Graham is a sports writer for the MFF Forum

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