Martin Odegaard on Real Madrid Future: 'I'm Ready to Take the Next Step'

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistApril 17, 2019

UTRECHT, NETHERLANDS - APRIL 14: Martin Odegaard of Vitesse  during the Dutch Eredivisie  match between FC Utrecht v Vitesse at the Stadium Galgenwaard on April 14, 2019 in Utrecht Netherlands (Photo by Peter Lous/Soccrates/Getty Images)
Soccrates Images/Getty Images

Martin Odegaard's disappointing spell as a Real Madrid player could come to an end soon after the 20-year-old said he is "ready to take the next step."

The Norwegian midfielder joined Real as a 16-year-old in January 2015 after being linked with numerous other European giants, including Bayern Munich, Barcelona, Liverpool and Ajax.

His progress stalled at the Santiago Bernabeu, though, and he failed to flourish in the Castilla side.   

Odegaard has spent the last two seasons out on loan in the Eredivisie, first at Heerenveen in 2017-18 and then at Vitesse Arnhem.

He has impressed with Vitesse in 2018-19, netting six goals and providing six assists in 27 league appearances. 

He has now revealed he will make a decision on his future at the end of the season, per AS (h/t Football Espana):

"I'm ready to take the next step. I want to keep growing as a player. My goal return and assists have increased and I think my performances have too, I am playing with more freedom and confidence. I want to finish the season strongly with Vitesse and then make a decision, but I am only 20 and I want to play in the Champions League."

Per Marca, Ajax have recently been linked with a €20 million (£17.4 million) move for Odegaard.

The Johan Cruijff ArenA could be the perfect place for Odegaard because Ajax have a stellar reputation for nurturing talented youngsters.

They are also expected to lose a number of their key players in the summer following a brilliant 2018-19 campaign.

Frenkie De Jong has already agreed to join Barcelona, and his team-mate Matthijs de Ligt could well go with him to the Camp Nou:

While it will be a big blow for Ajax to see their best young players depart, they are set to make a huge amount of money:

The Dutch club can use that to rebuild their squad, and Odegaard looks like a perfect match for Ajax.

The Norway international has proved he can be effective in the Eredivisie, and despite having been in the public eye for some time now, he is still young.

In the right environment, he could still make good on the potential that persuaded Real to sign him in the first place.   

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