Wolves target Martin Odegaard could be Joao Moutinho’s successor

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This article is part of Football FanCast’s Transfer Focus series, which provides opinion and analysis on recent transfer news…

According to the Mirror, Wolves are plotting a move for Real Madrid midfielder Martin Odegaard following his performances whilst on loan at league rivals Real Sociedad.

What’s the word?

We might only be entering October, but that hasn’t stopped the rumour mill from being in full flow this campaign.

The latest reports suggest that the west Midlands club are planning to launch an ambitious attempt to land Odegaard sometime in 2020, whether that be in January or during the summer remains to be seen.

At the age of just 16, he clinched a move to La Liga giants Real Madrid before becoming the youngest ever player to represent them.

He’s since found it difficult to break into the first team setup considering the wealth of midfield options they have at the Bernabeu, but this season he’s particularly caught the eye for Sociedad with his two goals and two assists, via WhoScored.

Odegaard has been described as an ‘exceptional talent’ by Utrecht boss Dick Advocaat while his former Stromsgodset manager said the 20-year-old reminded him ‘a little bit of Lionel Messi’.

Is the Europa League hurting Wolves?

Yes

Yes

No

No

Long-term successor

Firstly, Wolves are playing in the Europa League which is something Sociedad cannot offer.

They also clearly have some sort of relationship with Los Blancos as they were happy enough to send Jesus Vallejo to the west Midlands for the season.

If you add to that the fact that Moutinho will be 34 as next season gets underway, this move isn’t as ambitious or surprising as first thought.

Odegaard has been widely regarded as a flop over in Madrid, which is a little unfair considering the expectations and pressure that was thrown on him at such a young age, a time when he should have been sitting his school exams, not plying his trade at one of the biggest clubs in the world.

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But this season, he’s shown his electric potential with a string of excellent performances for the Whites and Blues.

In their 2-0 victory over Diego Simeone’s Atletico Madrid, the starlet ran the show – scoring a goal on top of recording three key passes, four crosses, and three successful dribbles, per WhoScored.

His creative exploits were only further emphasised against Deportivo Alaves just last week as he racked up an impressive 10 key passes in just one match, including one assist.

If Odegaard continues that level of form, then Madrid may well want to keep hold of him but should Wolves be able to clinch him, he could well be the long-term heir to Moutinho at Molineux.

The Portuguese playmaker was the source of eight assists in the Premier League last term and has averaged a minimum of 1.7 key passes per game across both seasons which only goes to show how integral he is to Wolves’ attacking dimension.

But as a 33-year-old, his time at the top-flight is likely to slowly diminish and acting early to find his replacement is rather smart business – Odegaard has shown this season how he could play in a similar forward-minded midfield role with his aforementioned performances.