Martin Odegaard insists Arsenal won’t underestimate wounded Manchester United in crucial top four clash

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Martin Odegaard insists Arsenal won’t underestimate wounded Manchester United in crucial top four clash
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Martin Odegaard insists Arsenal will not underestimate Manchester United this weekend, despite their humiliating 4-0 defeat at Anfield on Tuesday.

Arsenal and Man United will meet on Saturday lunchtime in what is a huge clash in the race to finish in the Premier League’s top four.

Tottenham are currently sat in fourth, but Arsenal are just one place behind and level on points, while United are sixth, three points behind and have also played a game more than the north London rivals.

Ralf Rangnick’s side head to the Emirates Stadium off the back of a hammering defeat at Anfield on Tuesday, with Liverpool running out 4-0 winners and having 72 per cent of the possession.

Arsenal, on the other hand, enjoyed a morale-boosting win over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday to end a run of three defeats in a row.

But Odegaard said: “I think that is football, sometimes you have games where you are not at your best and then the next game you can win.

“We lost to Southampton and then we beat Chelsea in the next one. That’s football.

“We know it will be a tough game [against Manchester United], we know the quality that they have.

“They have a lot of good players, a lot of individual quality, so it will be a tough game for us.

“All the games coming up are big games for us. The most important thing for us is to beat United on Saturday and then we’ll take the next one after that.

“We have to take it game by game and, as I’ve said many times, we just have to play every game as the last one, as a cup final, and we will see where it takes us.”

 (REUTERS)
(REUTERS)

Prior to their win over Chelsea, the Gunners had been stuttering in their bid to qualify for the Champions League.

Now, though, belief has returned that Arsenal could win the race for fourth and Odegaard believes the side showed their potential in their victory at Stamford Bridge.

“After losing three games, it was maybe even more important [to win at Chelsea],” he said. “I think we showed we had the level and the quality to compete against top teams, against Champions League teams. They won the Champions League last year.”

Odegaard was captain for the Chelsea game and he also wore the armband at Southampton last weekend, with usual skipper Alexandre Lacazette out with Covid-19.

“It was a big moment and I was happy to step in with Laca out,” Odegaard told Malaysian broadcaster Stadium Astro.

“Being the captain for the national team is something special and I think that gave me a lot of confidence and experience to step in and do it here as well. I was just happy to step in.”

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