Ødegaard: Arsenal will be ‘rewarded’ with trophy

Martin Ødegaard is confident Arsenal will be “rewarded with a trophy” next season and has vowed they can come back stronger after last season’s heartbreak.

Mikel Arteta’s side set new Premier League-era club records in registering 28 league wins and scoring 91 goals but still fell short as Manchester City claimed their fourth title in succession by two points.

Arsenal have begun their preparations for the 2024-25 season ahead of most other clubs as nine players not involved in either the Euros or the Copa América — including Ødegaard, Ben White and Jurriën Timber — joined up with club staff in the Spanish city of Marbella for a camp which focuses on both conditioning and allowing downtime with family members.

“We made history as we’ve talked about before and we have to be proud of those things,” Ødegaard said.

“It wasn’t enough to win it and that’s what we wanted to do. We all felt a bit disappointed with being so close. But in football, it is small margins. It is easy to look at one game but you have to look at the whole season and again it is small margins. We didn’t have the consistency to win it.

“We have to earn it. We know we can improve, we know we are going to get better. That’s what we are working for now. It is just small margins, small details in the game and how to deal with a long season. So close, but we are going to come back even stronger I’m sure.

“I think it is easy to find the motivation because we all want to win, we all want the same thing and we are all pushing each other so hard every day — staff, players, supporters, everyone is pushing in the same direction.

“I think it is just about doing those small things every day to become a little bit better and in the end I’m sure it is going to be rewarded with a trophy.”

Arsenal will head to the United States later this month for games against Bournemouth, Manchester United and Liverpool, with the final two matches to be shown on ESPN+.

Speaking to promote ticket sales ahead of that tour, Ødegaard admitted he found it tough to get over the previous campaign after Arsenal were pipped to the title on the final day of the league season as City beat West Ham to seal top spot.

“It’s hard, especially in the beginning,” he said. “It takes some time to really switch off. That’s important as well though, to disconnect from the football world and not think too much but obviously you think more about it to start and then you can leave it a little bit more with time.

“It’s always there, it’s always on your mind and I try my best to switch off. I have worked hard as well. After a week or two I started to work again. It’s always there in the back of the head.”

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