Edu negotiation of key clause in £35m deal is Arsenal’s smartest transfer since Santi Cazorla – Bailey Keogh

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Edu’s time at Arsenal since joining in 2019 has been heavily questioned due to the failure at times to negotiate the best deals for players joining and leaving the club. The Gunners have faced back-to-back eight place finishes with the Brazilian taking plenty of the blame.

However, the summer of 2021 certainly increased the his popularity within the fan base. The recruitment ahead of the current campaign was excellent and has seen the Gunners push for a place in the Champions League.

Martin Odegaard joined the club for a £35m fee from Real Madrid in the summer and has proven to be a genuine bargain. Edu certainly deserves credit for this.

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However, it is not just the deal itself that Edu deserves plaudits but it’s the fact he was able to leave out a potential buy-back clause in his contract. This is arguably his smartest piece of negotiation since joining the club.

According to transfer expert Fabrizio Romano, the Gunners and Real Madrid did not agree to a buy-back clause in Odegaard’s move, meaning Los Blancos cannot re-sign him for a cut-price deal. Something they are well-known for doing.

The Madrid side are in fact notorious for including buy-back clauses in players they have sold in the past, as they have done with players such as Sergio Reguilon who is currently playing for Spurs, and Alvaro Morata who previously played for Chelsea.

After failing to break into the squad as a 16-year-old, Odegaard featured mostly for the Real Madrid Castilla team before multiple loans to the Dutch league for two seasons. This helped him gain first-team experience.

He then experienced a successful loan spell at Real Sociedad in 2019, which was supposed to offer him the first-team minutes to prepare him ahead of a return to Madrid. But despite flourishing at Sociedad and proving his capacity to adapt to La Liga football, his game time in Madrid remained limited and Arsenal came calling as they agreed a loan deal for the midfielder in the January 2021 transfer window.

This was followed by a permanent transfer that summer after he impressed during his initial brief stay in the Premier League. In this campaign, Odegaard has arguably been Arsenal’s best player due to the impact he has had on the team. The Norway international has been crucial to Mikel Arteta’s side’s improved build-up play this season, a key factor behind why the club can boast the third-highest xG in the league since December 17.

The inability to create chances at the start of the season was a critical problem for the Gunners , who failed to score in each of their opening three games. However, since Odegaard’s move to the club in August, Arteta’s side have become one of the most creative sides in the league and the Norwegian’s creativity has been a key reason for the Gunners finding themselves in an increasingly healthy position to qualify for the Champions League ahead of next season.

Edu preventing Real Madrid from implementing a buy-back clause on the midfielder was a genius piece of business. It is clear Odegaard is going to be a crucial player for Arsenal for the next few years.

It’s fair to say Arsenal have not had a success like this in the transfer market since possibly the deal to bring Santi Cazorla to Arsenal from Malaga with little to no competition a decade ago.

Source by Football London

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