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Open Thread: August 21, 2021

Our Saturday issue of the Daily Merengue!

Arsenal Unveil New Signing Martin Odegaard Photo by Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images

The Open Thread/Daily Merengue is a place where you can discuss anything and everything related to football. Feel free to discuss the topics presented here, or start your very own discussions! The Open thread will be posted every day by one of the mods: Valyrian Steel, Felipejack, YoSnail, Ezek Ix or NeRObutBlanco.

How everything changed for Odegaard one day in Valdebebas.

Odegaard never imagined he would be back at the Emirates Stadium so soon, with his farewell message on July 3 having looked to be a permanent one.

The former Stromsgodset youth star was ready to finally get a chance at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu, with Zinedine Zidane no longer in place it seemed certain he would finally play. However, at the end of July there was a meeting with the newly appointed Ancelotti, in which Odegaard’s future was discussed.

The Italian coach explained to Odegaard that he was actually quite far down the pecking order in midfield, even going as far as to explain in a press conference that Odegaard was battling against eight other players. Instead of being given encouragement by Ancelotti, or even a roadmap to the starting XI if he performed in training, he was merely told he was nothing more than squad bulk, something he couldn’t accept.

Thus, he transmitted a desire to leave Real Madrid to his agent and father, which brought Arsenal back into play, despite the Gunners having felt their chances were remote and had in turn begun looking at an alternative in James Maddison.

Kiyan also talks about everything that contributed to the player and club parting ways after 6 years.

Contract extension with Fede on the cards.

Fede is already signed until 2025 so why is a contract extension being discussed so soon? Real Madrid are pursuing a policy of seeking continuity for the most important members of their squad. The latest to be made official are Thibaut Cortouis and Benzema. From the Santiago Bernabeu offices Fede is considered “untouchable”, as he is seen not only as a player of the present, but also as a pillar on which to build the future of the club. With this new document, it is intended to ensure his continuity practically for the next decade, as well as to review his salary in accordance with the performance offered.

ICYMI: Ricardo Carvalho explains why it was more difficult to adapt to Madrid than London.

Matt Wiltse’s article breaks down the Portuguese’s explaination of the differences between the Chelsea and Real Madrid dressing room in an interview with FourFourTwo. Check it out.