Maitland-Niles may be set for Arsenal freeze-out after BBC reveal - pundit
Danny Mills has suggested Ainsley Maitland-Niles could be frozen out at Arsenal.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the ex-Leeds United and England defender insisted it will be difficult for Maitland-Niles to be reintegrated at Arsenal after he went public with his desire to leave.
The five-time England international posted on Instagram on August 30 he wanted to quit the Gunners and join a club where he was guaranteed regular playing time.
BBC Sport reported on the same day Everton were interested in a late-window loan deal but nothing was completed.
Asked whether the 24-year-old can be reintegrated into Mikel Arteta’s plans, Mills told Football Insider correspondent Connor Whitley: “I think it’s difficult. It’s very, very difficult.
“Where does he fit in? He clearly wasn’t part of Arteta’s plans. They got rid of one young player in Willock. Now they’re not doing particularly well then all of sudden if you let another talented young player go…
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“But where does he fit? He’s not going to play left-back or left-wing back.
“I think it’s a shame because he’s a good young player and he clearly wanted to leave. For whatever reason, Arsenal wouldn’t allow that to happen.
“You just hope he doesn’t suffer because of that. He’s a good player, without a doubt. There are no concerns about that, he just wants to play and needs to play.”
Maitland-Niles, who spent the second half of last season on loan at West Brom, has two years left on his Arsenal contract.
He has made just one appearance – a 19-minute cameo against Man City – in the Premier League this term.
In other news, Kieran Maguire has dropped a “£345m” Arsenal bombshell.