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13th Mar 2023

Martin Odegaard declared Premier League’s best midfielder by Paul Merson

Rory Fleming

The Arsenal captain is leading the Gunners’ title charge.

Former Arsenal and England player Paul Merson has declared Martin Odegaard the Premier League’s best midfielder in the aftermath of the Gunners’ 3-0 win at Craven Cottage on Sunday.

Mikel Arteta’s table-topping Arsenal side romped home to a comfortable 3-0 victory over European hopefuls Fulham, extending their lead at the top of the league table to five points.

Odegaard scored his 10th league goal of the season against Fulham. (Credit: Getty Images)

Paul Merson: Martin Odegaard is the Premier League’s best midfielder.

Speaking in the aftermath of the North London club’s fifth consecutive league win, Merson exclaimed “As we talk today, Martin Odegaard is the best midfielder in the Premier League”!

The pundit and Soccer Saturday regular then went on to compare the Norwegian maestro with Manchester City’s Belgian midfielder, Kevin De Bruyne.

“He has more effect on the Arsenal team than Kevin de Bruyne has on Man City”, claimed Merson, before adding “I’m not saying he’s a better player than De Bruyne, but right now Odegaard’s having more of an impact”.

With both players central to their side’s successes, both Odegaard and De Bruyne find themselves locked in a Premier League title race, jostling for superiority over one another.

Merson believes Arsenal are now the title favourites. (Credit: Getty Images)

However, as Merson points out, Odegaard appears to be getting the better of his Belgian counterpart so far this season, saying “We have to talk in moments and, in the present, Odegaard is number one without a doubt”.

So far this campaign, the 24-year-old attacking midfielder has registered an impressive tally of 10 goals and six assists in the Premier League, as his Arsenal side sit atop of the division.

De Bruyne on the other hand has scored on four occasions in the league, but does boast an excellent assists record with 12 so far this term, mainly thanks to the prodigious Erling Haaland.

De Bruyne is no longer the league’s midfield kingpin according to Merson. (Credit: Getty Images)

As the season reaches its climax, Merson sees Arsenal as the most likely of victors in their battle against Pep Guardiola’s City side, in turn ending a near-two-decade league title drought.

“If Arsenal win their next two games against Palace and Leeds, I don’t see how they can be stopped”, said the pundit.

Mikel Arteta’s side now face off against Sporting Lisbon midweek in the Europa League round of 16, before Patrick Vieira bids to halt his former side’s title charge when Crystal Palace visit the Emirates Stadium on Sunday.

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