In my role as Norwegian national team manager on FM21, I need to keep tabs on how my Golden Generation are performing. I’ll be creating separate posts to track the key players who’ll play a big part for the national side while I’m in charge.
This post will be tracking Martin Ødegaard.
If Haaland is scoring our goals, Ødegaard will be creating them.
At just 21-years-old, he’s already considered a world-class midfielder. He’s a world-class playmaker to me. The vision, the flair, the technique and passing. The first touch, the dribbling ability, the agility! Jesus. If I can’t get Ødegaard assisting Haaland on a regular basis for the national team, I may as well resign and retire.
Will he get enough minutes at Real Madrid to continue on his development path? I’m really hoping so.
End of 2020/21 Season
Ødegaard’s season ended with defeat in the Champions League final for Real against PSG, as the Madrid giants ended the season empty handed.
Personally for the 22-year-old, it was one of his best seasons. He hit the magic double figure tally for both goals and assists. 10 goals and 11 assists in 41 starts (and 13 sub appearances) is a decent return in a Madrid side that finished way behind Barcelona and champions, their city rivals, Atléti.
They’ve brought Angel di Maria back to the club but sold Isco, so I’m willing to bet that Ødegaard will continue as chief playmaker. He’s been switching between a central and a wide role, similar to national level so far.
End of 2021/22 Season
Ødegaard bettered last season’s performance this time out for Real. He scored 13 goals and provided a whopping 20 assists across all competitions. He finished club joint top scorer with Karim Benzema.
It was another season of misery though for the club as they finished 3rd again behind Barcelona and Atleti, their city rivals taking home the league trophy yet again.
At international level, Ødegaard has flourished since being moved out right to be a Wide Playmaker in a 4-4-2. Cutting inside on his favoured left foot and using his ability to unlock defences has seen him provide six assists and five goals over the season.
Despite his best season on the pitch, some of his attributes have actually declined. His First Touch, Passing, Free Kick Taking, Corner Kick Taking and Decision making have all gotten one point worse over the season, along with his Bravery and Natural Fitness thanks to an injury he picked up late on in the season.
However, that hasn’t deterred Manchester City and they’re currently attempting to make him their man in a £97m transfer. It looks as though he’ll be a Premier League player next season.
End of 2022/23 Season
Ødegaard did make that move to Manchester City and now my two stars for the national team both play for the same club side. I think it’s fair to say they both found the transition tough. Ødegaard made more appearances than Haaland across the season (23(11)) but only scored three goals and made just one assist. That’s far removed from his 13 goals and 20 assists from his final season in Spain.
City’s array of midfield talent is quite frankly ridiculous and he’s got a lot of competition for a starting role. De Bruyne, Bernardo Silva and Raheem Sterling all performed much better than him over the season, not including Phil Foden, Heung-Min Son and young Serbian, Filip Stevanovic. Ødegaard and Haaland will have to up their game if they want to stay at City, though it’s highly likely I’ll never drop them for the national team.
He didn’t add to his goal tally across the season for Norway, but he did continue to lay on assists. Six assists helped us on our way to topping our Nations League group and a 3rd place World Cup finish.
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