Arsenal turned down ‘one of the best’ to sign Martin Odegaard instead

Arsenal turned down the chance to sign Papu Gomez this month, before agreeing a deal to bring Martin Odegaard in on loan.

The Gunners had been strongly linked with a move to bring in an attacking midfielder this month, having recently adapted their formation to accommodate an attacking midfielder.

Emile Smith Rowe has so far stamped his authority on the role, thoroughly impressing since Boxing Day, but we had insufficient cover.

Martin Odegaard has now arrived until the end of the season from Real Madrid, and will provide the necessary back-up, but Fabrizio Romano has just revealed that we were offered Papu Gomez, a player he deems as ‘one of the best players in the world’.

Romano told his Here We Go Podcast: [There was] an opportunity of Papu Gomez [moving to] Arsenal but they never considered him as a serious contender for the role of number 10. They were looking for a player – obviously, they signed [Martin] Odegaard, so there is nothing going on right now.

“But, Papu Gomez was a possibility [who was] offered [but] they were looking for a young player and not for an [older player] – respecting Papu Gomez because, in my opinion, he’s one of the best players in the world.”

Gomez has been one of the most influential players in Atalanta’s fearsome attack, with 59 goals and 71 assists to his name from his 252 appearances for the his former side (as stated on TransferMarkt).

The Argentine forward has since joined Sevilla in La Liga, but I can’t help but wonder if he could not only have provided valuable competition to Smith Rowe, but also teach him some lessons which could have helped him grow into his new role.

What kind of effect will Odegaard likely have on ESR?


Tags Fabrizio Romano Papu Gomez


  1. I agree, the physicality of the English game is a concern when considering older players even very good ones. And as you rightly say the younger players could benefit from having a battled hardened operator who while not covering every blade of grass, would be able to teach valuable lessons.

  2. Papu Gomez would have been a very good signing he played like Cazorla Arsenal need midfielders who are good on the ball. Only Partey is good on the ball every other midfielder they have are not very good on the ball they loos possession just from a poor touch or poor control back in the day with Cazorla Ozil Rosicky Ramsey even Wilshere the ball stuck to their feet having those type of players who have great close control helps when you’re building from the back and trying to beat a press. Papub would’ve been a good addition lets hope Odegaard will be a good addition.

  3. This could be the kind of horrible decision that might come back to haunt us if Ode doesn’t perform well, or if he does and doesn’t sign permanently, because Papu is an incredibly talented guy on a fairly inexpensive contract, who plays like someone 10 years younger…go check him out when you’ve got a minute…he was being offered up for under 10m because he had a falling out with the manager in Atalanta…he was the very catalyst for this team’s massive change of fortunes, setting a Serie A record for assists in a single season LAST YEAR with 16…he went to Sevilla for about 7.5m…I would have at least sniffed around to see if they would have gone for a loan with an intent to buy clause…valuable secondary scorer and a leader to boot…from a financial perspective it would have been savvy because he was sold for way less than his worth since the team lost all their leverage when the dispute became public…would have been nice to finally be on the winning side of one of those situations

    1. 👍 Papu Gomez cheap at half the price at under €10 million, but should be in addition to Odegaard loan. Martin Odegaard is one for the future and should he perform, there is a good chance he may want to stay. Real Madrid will have to sell some of their young assets to buy the players they want to win trophies. The financial impact of Covid19 on club revenues should not be underestimated.

      1. whos going to warm the bench then?

        we have heaps of midfielders

        only 2 mid can play and theres only 3 subs

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