Arsenal and AS Roma are now in more advanced talks about a possible deal for out-of-favour Gunners midfielder, Ainsley Maitland-Niles, according to Italian transfer journalist, Gianluca Di Marzio.
News of the the midfielder moving to the Serie A broke earlier in December but there was no substance to the talks at the time. However, Di Marzio has come out to claim that Roma boss Jose Mourinho wants the versatile midfielder and a deal is in the offing.
Roma’s sporting director Tiago Pinto is claimed to favour an initial six-month loan deal with the option of making it a permanent transfer.
A four-year contract has been touted, and Fabrizio Romano has reported via his Twitter page that the fee will be in the region of €10 million. The loan fee, however, is yet to be agreed.
Maitland-Niles frustrated with Arteta and Arsenal
Maitland-Niles debuted for Arsenal during the 2014/15 season but had to wait till 2017/18 to really have a good run in the club, making 83 appearances from that season until 2019/20.
The 24-year-old spent last season on loan with West Bromwich Albion after falling down the pecking order at the Emirates and could have moved to Wolverhampton Wanderers ahead of the 2021/22 season.
However, talks with Mikel Arteta convinced him to stay at Arsenal and now, those talks look to be empty words as the midfielder is still down the pecking order at the Emirates.
He has only played 11 times for Arsenal in all competitions this campaign and has grown frustrated with the manager and the club.
Jose Mourinho considers the midfielder a valuaboe asset to have as he can cover any role in the midfield, which is why Roma have contacted Arsenal about a deal for him.
Maitland-Niles prefers a central midfield role, however, and Jose Mourinho could offer him that role as Roma is lacking in midfield quality.
The Englishman will become the fourth English player to move to Serie A in the past decade. The Serie A was never a popular league among English players who chose to move abroad, with many preferring Spain, Germany and neighbouring Scotland instead.
He will join Chris Smalling and Tammy Abraham at Roma, and AC Milan’s Fikayo Tomori in the Serie A should the move materialise.
Arteta keen on Coutinho transfer
Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has reportedly given the green light to sign Barcelona outcast Philippe Coutinho, according to Spanish transfer news website, Fichajes.net.
The Gunners will be losing Thomas Partey and Mohamed Elneny to the African Cup of Nations and will be needing some midfield reinforcements.
On Arsenal’s January transfer plans, Arteta said: “It would be useful to change something, even if it is never easy.
“We are working towards this, to understand what our needs are, and to find the right solutions.
“I don’t think we are going to be able to sign players just for this short period of time.
“I think it’s a little bit unrealistic. But we will sit down now and make the right decision if we can.”