Arsenal midfielder Ainsley Maitland-Niles is unlikely to make his loan move to Roma permanent as he plans to return to the Gunners in the summer to resolve his future.
Ainsley Maitland-Niles is set to make a Premier League return this summer.
Arsenal midfielder Maitland-Niles, 24, is on loan at Roma in Serie A but is likely to come back to English football when his temporary switch concludes.
That is certain to put Premier League clubs on alert with Arsenal likely to allow him to leave the Emirates as the England international has one year left on his current contract.
Maitland-Niles went to Roma in January to play under Jose Mourinho with the hope of regular games and also a change to expand his horizons to put him back in the England frame.
The versatile former England U17s World Cup winner – who can operate in midfield or as a wing back – has had mixed fortunes at Roma under Mourinho.
He has enjoyed the experience, making nine appearances in all competitions for the Serie A outfit so far, but his loan expires this summer and the Italian club are unlikely to take up the opportunity to sign him permanently.
Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta is set to shake up his squad this summer and Maitland-Niles is likely to be one they allow to leave. Everton were previously interested last summer but had a £10m offer turned down but Arsenal would probably accept that sort of figure now because his contract is running down.
Maitland-Niles broke into Gareth Southgate’s England squad in 2020 after winning the FA Cup and his versatility was a huge bonus but found his opportunities limited the following season and went on to loan to West Brom in January 2021 for more regular games. Now Maitland-Niles might have to leave Arsenal – who he first joined at the age of six – permanently to push his career forward again.
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He grew up through the academy and is one of their exciting generation of players but he looks like his future will be elsewhere rather than the Emirates.
Arteta was happy to allow Maitland-Niles the opportunity to join the Serie A club on loan with his opportunities to play in the Premier League limited at the Emirates for him this season.
Arteta said earlier this year. “Ainsley came to me and explained the reasons why he thought the best thing for him in his career right now was to move away. He felt the opportunity to go to Rome and work with Jose was a good one. Being fair with the amount of minutes that he’s played he was entitled to that opportunity. We wish him the best.”
Maitland-Niles has made 132 appearances for the Gunners in all competitions, scoring three goals, since he made his debut as a substitute as a 17-year-old in a Champions League group match against Turkish side Galatasaray under former boss Arsene Wenger in December 2014.