Mikel Arteta makes a request to Martin Odegaard

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LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND: Arsenal’s Martin Odegaard (L) celebrates with teammate Gabriel Martinelli after scoring their team’s opening goal in the Premier League match between Everton and Arsenal at Goodison Park on December 6, 2021 (Photo by Gareth Copley / Getty Images)

Arsenal’s summer signing Martin Odegaard is currently the top scorer for Mikel Arteta’s side, having scored one goal in each of the last three games.

This was somewhat overlooked against Manchester United and Everton, given the final scores, but Arsenal fans could certainly benefit from Odegaard’s header against Southampton on Saturday.

Mikel Arteta has admitted he’s happy with the former Real Madrid’s form, and he says Arsenal need Odegaard to be a game-changer.

“Yes, and he should have scored a hat-trick against Everton,” Arteta said of Odegaard’s recent streak.

“There’s a lot more in the box and now he understands why we are encouraging him to do it. Because then he’s a winner – that’s the difference between a very good player and a winner.

“We need more of these players on the pitch, to win more of our games.”

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 06: (L - R) Martin Odegaard and Alexandre Lacazette of Arsenal speak before taking a free kick during the Premier League match between Everton and Arsenal at Goodison Park on December 06, 2021 in Liverpool, In England.  (Photo by Naomi Baker / Getty Images)
LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND: (L – R) Arsenal’s Martin Odegaard and Alexandre Lacazette speak before taking a free kick during the Premier League match between Everton and Arsenal at Goodison Park on December 6, 2021 (Photo by Naomi Baker / Getty Images)

Odegaard is certainly taking shooting positions more often now. Before the game against United, the 22-year-old had only scored one goal this season, from a free kick.

Now he has three in three games, and as Arteta mentions, he could have had even more. There were other opportunities to add to his tally in Everton’s game, and again against Southampton.

But it’s much better to be a player scoring one chance and missing another than not having chances in the first place.

Odegaard arguably took the longest of Arsenal’s summer signings to start, with Aaron Ramsdale, Ben White and Takehiro Tomiyasu settling in almost instantly, and Nuno Tavares and Albert Sambi Lokonga making good use of their opportunities.

That seems to be changing now, as the Norway international regains his pace in England.

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