Real Madrid are one step closer to completing a deal for Martin Odegaard with Arsenal after Carlo Ancelotti left the midfielder out of the matchday squad for their 4-1 win over Alaves on Sunday.

The Norwegian midfielder has been Gunners boss Mikel Arteta's top target this summer. Initially, it looked like a deal could not be struck owing to Odegaard's desire to remain with the La Liga giants. However, his omission from the first team squad has seen him push for a move, which Real are happy to sanction.

According to the Mirror, the Norway captain's agents have flown into London this week to finalise a deal with Arsenal. It is expected to be a season-long loan deal with an option for the Gunners to make it permanent for £30 million next summer.

The deal has progressed quickly since it became clear that Odegaard was surplus to requirements at the Santiago Bernabeu. The midfielder, who spent the second half of last season at Arsenal, is also keen to return to the Emirates Stadium after enjoying his time under Arteta and forming a bond with the rest of the squad.

Arsenal were heavily linked with a move for Leicester City's James Maddison before Odegaard's availability became clear. The £60 million demanded by the Premier League club put the Gunners off and they are currently focusing all their attention on the Norway international to fill the creative void and support current number 10 Emile Smith Rowe.

The north London club have thus far signed Ben White, Albert Sambi Lokonga and Nuno Tavares for a combined £76 million. But a shock 2-0 defeat at the hands of Brentford in the opening game of the Premier League season is likely to see Arteta look to further strengthen his squad before the transfer deadline on Aug. 31.

Arsenal remain in the market for a new creative midfielder, while a back-up goalkeeper, a new right-back and a striker are also on the wanted list. The 14-time FA Cup winners have held talks with Sheffield United for Aaron Ramsdale, but failed to agree a fee for the England international goalkeeper.

Martin Odegaard
Martin Odegaard (right) struck in Arsenal's 2-1 win over Tottenham DAN MULLAN/POOL