Brighton are eyeing  up an ‘ambitious’ move for versatile Arsenal midfielder Ainsley Maitland-Niles this summer, according to a report.

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 06: Ainsley Maitland-Niles of Arsenal during a friendly match between Arsenal and Charlton Athletic at Emirates Stadium on June 06, 2020 in London, England. (Photo by Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND – JUNE 06: Ainsley Maitland-Niles of Arsenal during a friendly match between Arsenal and Charlton Athletic at Emirates Stadium on June 06, 2020 in London, England. (Photo by Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images)

At the end of July, the Mirror reported that Brighton were looking at a move for Ainsley Maitland-Niles this summer. They’re keeping close tabs on him, with Brighton technical director Dan Ashworth well aware of the player’s potential from his time with the FA.

The Evening Standard also reported interest from Brighton in the Arsenal 22-year-old.

The Mirror are now reporting that Arsenal plan to sell Ainsley Maitland-Niles to raise funds for Mikel Arteta.

The Athletic’s David Ornstein recently reported that Maitland-Niles felt he needed to leave the club this summer to achieve regular first-team football. That was before he was handed a number of starts at the end of the season which looked, on the surface, like a bid to change his mind.

LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 01: Ainsley Maitland-Niles of Arsenal takes a knee in support of the Black Lives Matter movement during the Heads Up FA Cup Final match between Arsenal and Chelsea at Wembley Stadium on August 01, 2020 in London, England. Football Stadiums around Europe remain empty due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venues resulting in all fixtures being played behind closed doors. (Photo by Adam Davy/Pool via Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND – AUGUST 01: Ainsley Maitland-Niles of Arsenal takes a knee in support of the Black Lives Matter movement during the Heads Up FA Cup Final match between Arsenal and Chelsea at Wembley (Photo by Adam Davy/Pool via Getty Images)

Maitland-Niles even started the FA Cup final against Chelsea on Saturday and whether any of that did change his mind about leaving, it’s hard to say. Not that it matters now.

Arsenal will certainly look to move plenty of players on this summer. They have a large squad and selling the fringe members is the best way to raise cash for upgrades.

Maitland-Niles looks like he will be one of those players, given how sparingly Mikel Arteta used him before the last few weeks. But only if it’s for a good fee, and I’m not sure whether Brighton would offer what Arsenal are likely to want.

Still, it’s a rumour to watch in a busy August of transfer activity.

  • This article was amended on 6 August, 2020, to reflect the news that Arsenal were open to selling Ainsley Maitland-Niles.
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