Arsenal fans have been left furious after Man City midfielder Rodri’s crunching challenge left Martin Odegaard in agony on Saturday.
Manchester City midfielder Rodri left Premier League title rival Martin Odegaard in agony with a crunching tackle as Spain faced Norway on Saturday. And Arsenal fans are raging over the incident, accusing Rodri of attempting to injure the Gunners captain ahead of the season run-in.
Pep Guardiola and Mikel Arteta may have been watching Spain take on Norway in Euro 2024 qualifying with bated breath as two of their most crucial stars clashed in midfield.
And the latter wouldn’t have been happy with a challenge made by Rodri on his skipper in the first half as Arsenal gear up to hold off Man City in the pursuit of their first title since 2004.
In the early stages, Odegaard received the ball around the penalty spot from the right wing before aiming a shot towards Kepa Arrizabalaga’s goal.
However, Rodri flew in late with a ruthless challenge, leaving the 24-year-old in a heap in the penalty box and, somehow, not conceding a spot-kick after seemingly making no contact with the ball.
Odegaard rolled around the floor in pain as play continued before he argued his case on his knees to French referee Benoit Bastien.
Lots of Arsenal fans were livid on social media after the strong tackle, accusing the Citizens star of trying to weaken their title foes.
@kimmoFC tweeted: “Odegaard denied a clear penalty. Rodri trying to end Arsenal’s title run with a nasty red card challenge. Fuming.”
@TcholeIbrahim said: “Take Odegaard out. This Rodri guy may be on a mission.”
@mahad962 wrote: “Understand why Haaland claims to be injured. I don’t think Rodri would make such a foul to him…”
Odegaard recovered and continued, but it won’t help supporters’ nerves over fitness, with a trip to Georgia to come for Odegaard next week.
The business end of the 2022/23 season will then commence, with Arsenal eight points ahead of City at the Premier League summit, having played a game more.
It is in Arteta’s side’s hands, and with 10 games left and no other competitions to distract them, they will undoubtedly treat every outing like a cup final.
The Gunners return to action on Saturday when they host relegation-threatened Leeds United at the Emirates Stadium.