On-loan West Brom star Ainsley Maitland-Niles has explained why he was desperate to leave Arsenal via the loan route in January.
The versatile Englishman has been on the books of Arsenal since the age of six.
Now 23, Maitland-Niles has never been able to nail down a regular spot in Arsenal’s first team under various different managers.
His flexibility has always ensured he has had a role within the squad. Though according to player himself, that was not enough to make him stick around.
With the prospect of guaranteed first-team action offered, Maitland-Niles jumped at the chance to join West Brom on loan in January.
Playing primarily in midfield under Sam Allardyce, Maitland-Niles has played the full 90 in each of his last five league games.
However, the England international still harbours hopes of becoming a regular under Mikel Arteta once his loan stint expires.
“It’s another loan deal, you are going to end up going back to the club eventually,” he said.
“It was just more of a chance for me to show what I’m capable of other than sitting on the bench for the rest of the season and rotting away.
“The main reason was being able to play as there’s nothing better than playing. I felt it would be great to experience the work of people trying to save their careers and stay in the Premier League.
“I think it was the perfect fit for me to be here and show them the qualities I can produce.”
Martinez shames Arsenal – ‘They didn’t deserve me‘
Meanwhile, summer Aston Villa recruit Emiliano Martinez has explained how his Arsenal exit came to be after declaring the Gunners “didn’t trust me like they should have.”
Martinez departed the Emirates after a 10-year stint with the club that never produced a sustained first-team run.
The Argentine had performed capably on the rare occasions he was called upon. As such, he become the club’s designated cup keeper in his final season.
Nevertheless, the decision was made to move on, with Aston Villa the beneficiaries after securing a deal potentially rising to £20m.