Martin Odegaard outlined his immediate future lies with Real Madrid striking a seemingly fatal blow to Arsenal's hopes of sealing a transfer.
Attacking midfielder Odegaard moved to Emirates Stadium on a temporary deal in January after struggling to break into the first-team picture at the Santiago Bernabeu under Zinedine Zidane.
Odegaard made 14 Premier League appearances, scoring twice, providing one assist and creating 20 chances for his team-mates.
Arsenal were reportedly hopeful of striking a full-time deal but the exit of Zidane and return of Carlo Ancelotti as head coach has apparently put an end to that prospect, with Odegaard due to return to pre-season training in the Spanish capital.
"The status is that I am a Madrid player and that I will return and start up there in a week and a half," he told TV 2 in his native Norway.
"Real Madrid have been clear that they would like me back. So, then it will be time to go there when the training starts up again."
Odegaard was signed by Madrid as a prodigious teenage talent in 2015 but has yet to fully nail down a spot in the first team, spending loan spells in the Eredivisie with Heerenveen and Vitesse.
It was during a season-long stay with Real Sociedad in the 2019-20 campaign that Odegaard really began to show his talents in LaLiga, a spell that returned four goals and six assists from 31 top-flight appearances as well as 62 chances created – 10 of which are defined by Opta as big chances.
That form saw Madrid initially retain him as part of their first-team squad last term but he only made seven LaLiga appearances before joining Arsenal.
Odegaard, though, insists it remains his ambition to be a success at Madrid.
"Of course, it has always been a dream to play there. I have been in the club for over six years now, and that has always been the goal," he said.
Ancelotti will be the man at the helm when Odegaard does return, with the Italian having departed Everton for a second spell in charge.
Asked if he had spoken with Ancelotti yet, Odegaard replied: "No, not with him personally, but I have talked a lot with the club and had a close dialogue.
"So, I feel they have a good overview. I always want to play, I have said that all the time."