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Backheel Breakfast: Martin Ødegaard is already full of himself

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The Real Madrid starlet cares not for Castilla.

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Denis Doyle/Getty Images

Martin Ødegaard, 16-year-old wonderkid and full international, isn't playing for Real Madrid Castilla in the third division of Spanish football. Why? Because he's a bit of a self-important jerk, apparently.

Backroom staff feel that with Ødegaard in the side, Castilla play more like a team of 10 than 11 ... Ødegaard has refused to train with the reserves and only joins in with training sessions on the eve of the team's games. That's not enough to click with the other players, or allow everyone in the side the chance to get to know each other.

Wait, why is he never training with the reserves? This seems dumb. Yes, he's good enough to train with Madrid's first team and doing so once in a while is probably good for him, but it's better for him to get to know the teammates he'll have to play with for at least the rest of this season. Surely there's more to this.

The newcomer and his father seek refuge in the clause included his contract with Madrid which stipulates that the club must ensure that he trains with the senior squad five days a week ... Regrettably, some players have complained that the teenager "can't be bothered" with his Castilla team mates and is only interested in being alongside Cristiano Ronaldo.

It's a contract clause! Good stuff. In order to win the race to sign Ødegaard, Madrid put a clause in his contract that made them a more appealing option than Bayern Munich, Manchester United and the like. But now that they've got him, he's become a bit of a problem. He should be tearing it up at Castilla, but instead he's on the bench because he won't take training with them seriously.

Ødegaard could probably fast track his integration into the first team if he was dedicated to improving in his current role and became the star of the B team, but think about what you were like when you were 16. Then, imagine you were a millionaire who had been hailed as the best young talent in whatever you wanted to do. Then think about telling yourself that. Wouldn't work, would it?

In the news

Luis Figo refutes CAF president Issa Hayatou's claim that all of African football will be supporting Sepp Blatter in the FIFA presidential election. (BBC)

Parma's players are trying to sell the club to prospective buyers. (Football Italia)

Tijuana's Juan Arango has been handed a two-match ban for biting. (ESPN FC)

The secret to Manchester United's good form? Telepathy, obviously. (Mirror)

Former Liverpool fullback Andrea Dossena has been arrested on suspicion of shoplifting. (Liverpool Echo)

Roy Keane is denying a road rage allegation. (Guardian)

You should be reading

Kirsten Schlewitz on Rafa Benitez trying to perpetuate the myth that he's good. (Soccer Gods)

Jim White on non-league football becoming cool. (Telegraph)

Barry Glendenning on European football's biggest historical underachievers. (Guardian)

Fun with transfer rumors

The section in which nothing should be taken seriously.

Manchester City's response to Inter Milan's Yaya Toure interest? Give us Mauro Icardi. (Football Italia)

City could also replace Toure with Jack Wilshere and Jordan Henderson. (Mail)

Fiorentina have triggered Mohamed Salah's loan extension and plan to buy him in summer of 2016. (Standard)

Tuesday's games

Montreal Impact are into the CONCACAF Champions League final. (Mount Royal Soccer)

Aston Villa drew QPR in one of the best games of the season. (7500 to Holte)

Juventus smashed Fiorentina to make the Coppa Italia final. (Black, White and Read all over)

Atletico Madrid had no problem coasting past Real Sociedad.

Sevilla kept pace with a tough away win over Levante. (Sky Sports)

Borussia Dortmund advanced in the DFB-Pokal with this amazing game-winner.

Wolfsburg are also through after beating Freiburg.

Monaco and Montpellier didn't produce a goal, but here are the highlights. (Ligue 1)

Check out all the highlights from Copa Libertadores. (FootballManiaChannel)

What to watch on Wednesday (click for listings, all times ET)

Arminia Bielefeld vs. Borussia Mönchengladbach (1 p.m.) - A Pokal semi with four elite teams is looking more and more likely.

Barcelona vs. Almeria (2 p.m.) - Likely a pretty easy one for the Blaugrana.

Bayer Leverkusen vs. Bayern Munich (2:30 p.m.) - Probably the best game of the day.

Napoli vs. Lazio (2:45 p.m.) - The other Coppa Italia semifinal.

Blackburn vs. Liverpool (2:45 p.m.) - An FA Cup quarterfinal replay, winner goes to Wembley.

PSG vs. Saint-Etienne (3 p.m.) - PSG continue to pursue a quadruple in the Coupe de France.

Rayo Vallecano vs. Real Madrid (4 p.m.) - A fun local rivalry game, but Rayo don't change their wide open style against top competition, so they'll probably get smashed.

Copa Libertadores (from 7 p.m.) - Four games, including Tigres-River.

America vs. Herediano (10 p.m.) - Hilariously, the Mexican giants got smashed in the first leg and need to win 3-0 or better.