Carlo Ancelotti has claimed that the much-hyped signing of Martin Odegaard during his managerial spell at Real Madrid was a ‘PR (public relations) exercise’ by the 2016 Champions League winners.
Odegaard was a subject of transfer battle last summer between a host of elite European clubs including the likes of Barcelona, Bayern Munich, Manchester United, Arsenal, Dortmund and Ajax before joining Real Madrid as a 16-year-old talent from Sromsgodset for a reported fee of £3 million.
Since then, however, the Norwegian International has made just one appearance for Real Madrid’s senior squad, spending most of his playing time with the second team.
The newly appointed Bayern Munich manager Carlo Ancelotti insists that he never asked his former club to sign Odegaard and that the deal was implemented by Los Blancos president Florentino Perez.
“When Florentino (Perez) buys a Norwegian footballer, you simply have to accept it,” Ancelotti quotes in his latest book ‘Quiet Leadership’.
“Furthermore, the president decided that he would play three games with the first team as a public relations exercise.
“He could be the best player in the world, but I don’t care because he was not a player who I asked for. That signing was to do with PR.”
Despite his lack of first team football, Odegaard has nine caps for Norway but is expected to be loaned out of Bernabeu this summer.