Real Madrid’s 16-year-old teenage sensation Martin Odegaard has been included in the first-team squad for the first time since his move to the club in the January transfer window. He could make his senior debut for the club during their match against Almeria on Wednesday night.
Speaking at his pre-match press conference, manager Carlo Ancelotti said, "Ødegaard, Mayoral and Diego Llorente are called for tomorrow. Two will go to the bench. They may have opportunities to play."
The Real Madrid squad has been suffering from a spate of injuries of late, and that was confirmed as the reason why he chose to bring the youngsters into the squad by Ancelotti, who said, "We have a complicated schedule. They are difficult games but we are confident. The team is fresh. We don't think about Barça.”
The reigning Champions League winners have been dealing with injuries to midfield lynchpin Luka Modric, winger Gareth Bale and striker Karim Benzema. While Modric was initially ruled out for six weeks, Bale and Benzema are much closer to making their returns. The Italian manager also confirmed that Keylor Navas will start the match in goal for Los Blancos.
"Bale will be ready to play against Sevilla. On Thursday, he'll train with the team. Benzema, on Sunday. Tomorrow Keylor Navas will play. Why in the Bernabeu? The location has nothing to do with the decision."
The news of Odegaard’s inclusion in the squad will come as welcome news to his fans and followers after reports earlier this month suggested that the young prodigy was struggling to adjust to the playing style of Real Madrid Castilla, as a result of which he was dropped from the team.
Published 28 Apr 2015, 17:07 IST