Maitland-Niles believes he has to leave Arsenal for first-team football

Former Arsenal academy graduate Ainsley Maitland-Niles believes he has to leave the club this summer in order to play regular first-team football.

In an exclusive by reliable journalist David Ornstein (via The Athletic), Maitland-Niles believes the “writing is on the wall” for his time at Arsenal and will have to exit in order to play on a more regular basis.

The 22-year-old came through the Gunners’ Hale End academy and made his senior debut in 2014 versus Galatasaray in the Champions League at the age of 17. Since then, the Englishman has accumulated 96 appearances in various positions from right-back to central midfield.

This season, the versatile player has made a total of 29 appearances in all competitions under three separate managers in Unai Emery, Freddie Ljungberg and Mikel Arteta.

Following Arteta’s arrival, the Englishman played six consecutive matches in defence before losing his place in the squad.

In 2020, Maitland-Niles has only started in four out of a possible 20 fixtures in all competitions with three of those games being apart of Arteta’s first six matches in charge. It’s reported that the player feels a lack of trust in him from Arteta and would be open to departing his boyhood club once the transfer window opens.

The 22-year-old’s current contract is set to expire in 2023 and the player has attracted interest from clubs in both England and Germany.

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