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Odegaard bids farewell to Sociedad before Madrid return

MADRID, Aug 12 – Norway midfielder Martin Odegaard has confirmed that he is leaving Real Sociedad to return to Real Madrid after a hugely successful loan spell at the Basque club.

Odegaard, who became Real Madrid’s youngest player when he made his debut at 16 back in 2015, joined Sociedad on a season-long loan last year, with the option of a second campaign.

The midfielder said last October that he wished to stay for two years at Sociedad in search of some consistency after three loans in three years, but the Liga champions have recalled the 21-year-old to their squad ahead of the new campaign.

“I wanted to send all the fans a farewell message but above all a message of gratitude for what has been an unforgettable year for me,” Odegaard said in a video released on Sociedad’s official website.

Odegaard helped Sociedad make a push for a top-four finish and although they missed out on qualifying for the Champions League, they ended sixth to clinch a Europa League berth on the final day of the season.

They also knocked Real Madrid out of the Copa del Rey on their way to reaching the final against Athletic Bilbao, which has been postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I have experienced great moments with this shirt, starting with my presentation, my first goal, reaching the Copa del Rey final and qualifying for the Europa League,” added Odegaard.

“The time has come to say our goodbyes but right here you have a Real Sociedad fan forever.”

The club also paid tribute to Odegaard, who made 36 appearances in all competitions, scoring seven goals.

“It’s difficult to make such a big impression in such a short space of time but Martin has done that,” said a message on the club’s website.

“He leaves us to return to Real Madrid but we’ll never forget everything he has done for us in this unforgettable season.” (Reporting by Richard Martin; Editing by Ken Ferris)

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