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FOOTBALL

Odegaard youngest ever Real Madrid debutant

Norwegian football prodigy Martin Ødegaard on Saturday night became the youngest player ever to debut for Real Madrid, taking to the pitch against Getafe at just 16 years, five months and six days old.

Odegaard youngest ever Real Madrid debutant
Martin Ødegaard on the bench at the Estadio Bernabeu before Real Madrid's match against Almería last month. Photo: EFE / NTB scanpix
The Drammen-born wonder boy smashed the previous record held for over 30 years by Spanish striker Sebastian Losada, who was 17 years and 6 days old when he first played for the team in 1984. 
 
“I was a little bit nervous about playing in front of so many people,” Odegaard said after the match. “But I tried to enjoy the moment. It's a special day, I feel very proud and very happy.” 
 
Ødegaard was called off the substitute’s bench 58 minutes into Real Madrid’s 7-3 victory, ending his frustrating four-month wait playing for Madrid Castilla, which function’s as the Real Madrid b-team. 
 
Once on the pitch, he came close to helping add a goal to Real Madrid’s tally, making a brilliant pass which team-mate Jesé Rodríguez Ruiz then failed to convert into an easy goal. 
 
Ordegaard was courted by some of the world’s biggest clubs including Manchester City and Bayern Munich before opening to jon Real Madrid. 
 
Real Madrid’s outgoing manager Carlo Ancelotti came under fire earlier this year for repeatedly denying Odegaard his time in the limelight, but he maintained firmly that the young player would have to wait until the right time.  
 

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FOOTBALL

Nordic countries to launch joint bid to host 2027 World Cup

Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland and Iceland want to jointly host the FIFA Women's World Cup in 2027.

Nordic countries to launch joint bid to host 2027 World Cup
Sweden players during this year's World Cup in France. Photo: Jean-Paul Pelissier/Reuters/Ritzau Scanpix

The five Nordic nations want to share hosting duties for the 2027 edition of the World Cup finals and are to present the idea to the Nordic Council at a meeting in Stockholm on Tuesday, Danish football association DBU has confirmed.

FIFA is already positively disposed to joint bids for future finals tournaments, which has lent encouragement to the Nordic project, according to DBU's chairman Jesper Møller.

“We can see that support for women's football is here to stay, most recently at the (2019) World Cup in France, where matches were played in front of full stadiums and television viewers' interest was huge,” Møller said.

“A joint Nordic World Cup would not only ensure a fantastic experience for many football fans but will also strengthen important Nordic partnerships and community, and hopefully inspire many football-keen women and girls,” he continued.

“That's why support from the Nordic Council is important,” he added.

The Nordic Council (Nordisk Råd) is the official body for inter-parliamentary co-operation among the five Nordic countries and three territories of the Faroe Islands, Greenland, and the Åland Islands.

DBU is also looking into the possibility of hosting the 2025 European Championships in Denmark.

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