Klopp revealed that he wanted to bring Odegaard to Borussia Dortmund while managing the German club. The midfielder was just 15 years of age at that point and ultimately stayed in Norway before moving to Real Madrid in 2015.
Klopp was full of praise for the current Arsenal captain during an interview with TV2 and said (via Metro):
‘‘I like him a lot, that’s easy in the moment I think. It was a bit more difficult at the start of his career at Madrid, it didn’t look like it would work out.’’
‘‘I was really disappointed about that because we wanted him at Dortmund, we wanted him as well when he was very young, we had a long talk when he was a kid still, with his dad, in the end he decided for Madrid, that’s fine.’’
‘‘If you compare Dortmund to the city of Madrid, as nice as it is, Madrid… maybe I would’ve made the same decision, but I would’ve loved that time if he joined us. But it’s all fine, that’s not important.’’
The Liverpool boss showered even more praise on the Norwegian international and said:
‘‘That’s why I’ve followed him always, I’m really happy he’s become the player we all expected him to be, and even better if you want, he has a massive role in an unbelievably strong Arsenal team. He’s still young, clear mind, very influential, cannot say anything negative about him, to be honest. A top player.’’
Klopp will now have to formulate a plan to keep Odegaard quiet when his Liverpool team take on the Gunners in the Premier League on October 9. The Reds are ninth in the league standings after a poor start to the campaign.
Martin Odegaard has been superb for Arsenal this season
Odegaard has led Arsenal by example since taking over the armband at the start of the 2022-23 season. The Norwegian has put in multiple superb displays to help the Gunners sit at the top of the Premier League standings with 21 points from eight matches.
In seven league matches, he has scored three goals while pulling the strings from midfield. His ball retention and creativity have helped his team's attackers thrive.
Odegaard was impressive once again during Arsenal's 3-1 win against Tottenham Hotspur on Saturday (October 1). In 80 minutes of action, he completed 80% of his passes and recorded a key pass, one successful dribble, a shot on target and an interception.