Martin Odegaard Reportedly Added to Real Madrid Champions League Squad
Martin Odegaard has been included in Real Madrid's Champions League squad after impressing on his debut for the club's Castilla side, according to reports emerging from Spain.
The Norwegian wonderkid made his debut during an unofficial 3-3 draw with Beijing Guoan, a fixture which helped "to assess the level of progress the 16-year-old has made in his physical adaptation since moving to the Spanish capital," as reported by Carlos Forjanes of AS.
Ed Arons of The Guardian suggests the youngster will now be at Carlo Ancelotti's disposal in Europe, while Nicholas Rigg of AS indicated he made a good impression:
Madrid face Schalke in a two-legged Champions League tie which appears easily winnable on paper.
Without disrespecting the German outfit, the European champions will be more than confident of exiting their first leg in Gelsenkirchen with an advantage. Once the Bernabeu fixture arrives, a heavy scoreline is possible.
Odegaard is already the youngest player to have appeared in a European Championship match after featuring for Norway in October 2014. He could potentially become the youngest player and scorer in a Champions League match, not to mention breaking the same in-house records at Madrid, per UEFA.com.
Former Chelsea defender Celestine Babayaro currently holds the record for being the competition's youngster player, having made his debut with Anderlecht at the age of 16 years and 87 days. Odegaard turned 16 on Dec. 17, however, so will need to make his appearance soon if he's to scrub Babayaro out of the history books.
Spanish football expert Guillem Balague recently described how Madrid will raise Odegaard to be a global star:
It's conceivable if Madrid establish a decent lead, Ancelotti could choose to give the developing star a cameo appearance.
Odegaard is level-headed and confident enough to not be overwhelmed by challenges like this. He could benefit from getting a taste on the toughest club stage of them all, and an appearance would certainly satisfy the longing of those who wish to see the player in live action for the first time.