Ainsley Maitland-Niles sees his future at Arsenal on the wing which is handy as the club desperately need some widemen.
Getting a winger into the club is apparently one of Arsenal’s priorities even though they have no cash to spend on any new players. An internal solution, then, might be the way to go and Ainsley Maitland-Niles believes he could be just the man to step up and fill the wide void at the club.
“I’d like to be a winger,” he told Sky Sports after confirming that he is currently best as a central midfielder. “I feel comfortable there and I’ve been playing there this season.
“I like to think of myself as a winger at 25 years old, starting every week for Arsenal, scoring and assisting goals.
“I don’t feel like I’m there. I’m still young and I have a lot of learning to do.
“Even if I was playing week in, week out I wouldn’t say I was there because the learning stage I am at now, I still have so much more to give to the game.
“Once I get there where I can’t give any more, then I’d say I’m there.”
Maitland-Niles has been deployed as a right wing-back, right midfielder, right back, and left back (against City in the first game before he broke his leg) this season
One goal in seven Premier League appearances is a record he will need to work on if he wants to seal a move to the wing permanently.
“I’ve had love for the club since I’ve been here. I’ll always have love for it but it’s getting stronger every day,” Maitland-Niles continued.
“It started a long time ago playing for Lakeview. It was pretty strange to get a call at such a young age and for someone to tell you a fantastic club like Arsenal had been watching you and monitoring your progress.
“I can’t remember the team we were playing against at the time but I think my dad came up to me afterwards and he said that there was a scout that was talking to him and from that conversation my face lit up as soon as I heard Arsenal because that was my boyhood club.
“I think it’s more of my dad to be honest. Since I was born he’s just loved Arsenal.
“He’s always bought me football kits since growing up as a baby. I had a few Dreamcast kits and that’s going back a long way. It was in the heart from a young age.”