Kevin Campbell has claimed Ainsley Maitland-Niles will be an Arsenal regular in midfield next season if he continues to consistently star for West Brom.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former Gunners and Albion striker claimed Mikel Arteta will consider the 23-year-old for selection in midfield next season if he performs week in, week out at The Hawthorns.
Maitland-Niles produced an eye-catching display as Sam Allardyce’s side shared a goalless draw with Burnley last summer.
He made five successful dribbles and 10 ball recoveries from central and left midfield positions on what was just his third start for the Baggies. (Wyscout)
The England international swapped the Emirates for the Hawthorns as he wanted to play in the middle of the park as opposed to at full-back or wing-back.
When asked whether Maitland-Niles proved his midfield credentials at Turf Moor, Campbell told Football Insider: “It is a case of don’t tell me, show me with Maitland-Niles.
“He needs to show that he is a centre-midfielder his his performances and against Burnley it was a Premier League level performance in the middle of the park.
“It is all about consistency though. If he can do it week in, week out Mikel Arteta will consider him in midfield for Arsenal next season. Arteta will think, ‘Actually, I will use him in there.’ He is only on loan.”
Speaking on Maitland-Niles’ performance on Saturday, Allardyce said: “Very good.
“But he may have made himself look better in the wide left position, rather than central midfield, after that performance.”