West Ham United have one of Norway's hottest prospects on their books.
Prior to his move to Real Madrid, Norwegian teenager Martin Odegaard was linked with the vast majority of top clubs in Europe, unsurprisingly given that he was playing regularly for Stromsgodset’s first-team at just 15 and scoring and assisting for fun.
He would soon become the youngest player ever to represent his country, still before his 16th birthday. But thus far he has failed to make the kind of impact many expected while playing for Real Madrid Castilla, scoring one goal and providing four assists in 37 appearances.
Of course this is a considerable step up, even playing for Real’s B team, but there is a young player currently on the books at West Ham United who could leapfrog Odegaard as Norway’s most exciting prospect in the next couple of years.
Martin Samuelsen has a very long way to go before he is talked of in the same breath as Odegaard, and yet the 18-year-old has something about him that suggests he is going to be a superstar.
Anyone who has watched the Hammers youngster on loan at Peterborough United this season will have seen the ease with which he glides past opponents, the superb balance and eye for a perfect pass.
There is also an innate confidence that simply cannot be taught and in Samuelsen and Odegaard Norway have a very bright future.
Where the West Ham midfielder may have an advantage is in how quickly he is likely to be integrated into Slaven Bilic’s first-team.
He is certainly ready for that and it would be wise to get him back to the club this summer and allow him to learn from the likes of Manuel Lanzini and Dimitri Payet while giving him plenty of opportunities to impress himself.
Odegaard is a wonderful talent but so is Samuelsen, and if West Ham get this right they could have a superb player on their hands for the next decade.