The Washington Post

Norway adds 15-year-old soccer player Martin Odegaard to its national roster

What were you doing in high school? (Vegard Wivestad Grott/AP)

Most 15-year-old soccer players would be lucky to make their high school’s varsity roster. Martin Odegaard, a teenager from Norway, is setting that bar a bit higher now: He made his country’s national team and is set to become the youngest player to represent the Nordic nation as the squad readies for a friendly against the United Arab Emirates next week, FIFA reports.

“He has played so well in a number of league games that I wanted to see him in the national team,” said Coach Per-Mathias Hogmo in a statement (via FIFA). “I said before the season that he was going to be the comet of this season and that he could become the youngest player in the history of the national team. I am not surprised that he has performed so well up to now. Now I can’t wait to see him in action.”

Odegaard meanwhile, who already plays professionally as a midfielder with Stromsgodset, is taking the news rather maturely. He told Norwegian soccer news site that he was “shocked” and sent out a single, very adult-seeming tweet.

Translated from Norwegian, it simply states, “Thanks for all the congratulations. It is appreciated :)”

Odegaard’s father Hans Erik Odegaard isn’t as surprised, however. “If you are good enough, you are old enough,” he said (via FIFA).

Marissa Payne writes for The Early Lead, a fast-breaking sports blog, where she focuses on what she calls the “cultural anthropological” side of sports, aka “mostly the fun stuff.” She is also an avid WWE fan.



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