Arsenal ‘wouldn’t swap’ Odegaard for Man Utd star Fernandes

Arsenal “wouldn’t swap” Martin Odegaard for Man Utd midfielder Bruno Fernandes, according to former Premier League striker Darren Bent.

The Norway international has been in great form for the Gunners this season, helping them to fourth place in the Premier League with five goals and three assists.

Although Man Utd currently sit sixth in the standings, Fernandes has still contributed nine goals and six assists in the league this campaign but Bent thinks Arsenal would still rather have Odegaard than the Portugal international in their side.

Speaking about Fernandes, Bent told talkSPORT: “Of course, he’s been a very good player for Manchester United, but I’m still waiting for him to turn up when they really need him in those big games.”

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When asked if he was being harsh on the Portuguese midfielder, Bent added: “No, I wouldn’t – I’ll tell you that right now. No, I would not.

“Right now, I’d rather have Martin Odegaard with the way Arsenal are playing. I’m taking Odegaard in that role for Arsenal. He’s perfect for what Arsenal are doing right now. I wouldn’t swap him for Bruno.”

Meanwhile, former Arsenal midfielder Paul Merson thinks Odegaard is now the “first name on the teamsheet” for Mikel Arteta at Arsenal after impressing in recent months.

“Martin Odegaard has proved me wrong and is becoming the leader Arsenal need to pass their toughest test yet,” Merson told the Daily Star.

“He is the main man there now and the first name on the teamsheet for me. He has really improved and is doing the business.

“I think the players respect him because they can see he’s a real player. I didn’t see it at first, I have to admit.

“It looked like he didn’t really want to leave Real Madrid, and I didn’t think he pulled up any trees on his loan spell at Arsenal.

“He could have sulked and lost his confidence when Madrid didn’t want him any more, but he’s playing better than ever now. He’s Arsenal’s go-to man and he makes them tick.

“He isn’t a leader in terms of running around and kicking people or barking out orders. But in terms of the way he’s playing he is.

“The way he’s turned it around people are looking at him now and fair play, he has done very, very well. He always wants the ball and knows how to use it. That’s leadership too.

“I take my hat off to him because he’s top, top drawer. One of the best in the Premier League in my opinion.”


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