The 2017-18 campaign proved to be a breakthrough season for Ainsley Maitland-Niles at Arsenal after widely impressing in a number of differing positions, and after penning a supposed 5-year contract extension at the Emirates on Tuesday, the adaptable midfielder is naturally ‘very pleased’ to be a Gunner for the foreseeable future.
Upon his arrival in north-London last month, Arsenal’s head coach Unai Emery stressed his desire to utilise and develop Maitland-Niles at the club under his command, and the trusted England U21 international, speaking to the media – via Evening Standard – expressed his gratitude to his Spanish boss and his employers.
“It feels fantastic knowing that I’m going to be a part of the squad, and a big part of the squad. It means a lot with the new head coach coming in and Arsenal tying me down. I’m very pleased.” He said.
“[Emery and I] had a little meeting. He said that he wants all of his players to work hard and I’m no stranger to doing that. It will be second nature to me.
“I think [the high-pressing game] suits me a lot, too. I’ve got a lot of pace to give to the team, pressing up high and winning the ball back as soon as possible is a major factor in football.”
Having delightedly shaken hands on a renewed deal, the 20-year-old utility man, who donned the No.30 jersey last term, will be issued Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s old No.15 shirt, amplifying his newly instated importance within the set-up.
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