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Coolest-ever Arsenal penalty taker makes honest title confession

The former Arsenal star who was ousted by Mikel Arteta has made an honest confession about the club and the Premier League title race

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Image credit: Getty Images

Former Arsenal player Ainsley Maitland-Niles has shared his candid sentiments about his time at the club and his hopes for their current Premier League campaign.

Having been a part of the Arsenal Hale End academy since the age of six, Maitland-Niles progressed through the ranks to make his senior debut under Arsene Wenger in late 2014.

Despite considering himself a midfielder, he became a regular starter at right-back under Unai Emery and maintained his place in the team during Mikel Arteta’s tenure, even featuring in the FA Cup final victory at the end of the 2019/2020 season. However, his international appearances for England ceased in 2020, marking a transition period in his career.

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Former Arsenal star Ainsley Maitland-Niles

Former Arsenal star Ainsley Maitland-Niles (Image credit: Getty Images)

As his opportunities dwindled at Arsenal, loan spells at West Brom, Roma, and Southampton preceded his departure to Lyon as a free agent in 2023. Despite his departure, Maitland-Niles still holds affection for his boyhood club, expressing his support and desire for them to win the league title this season.

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In an interview with The Athletic, Maitland-Niles conveyed his sentiments, stating, “It’s my boyhood club, I still support them and look out for them. I’m hoping they are going to win the league this year. I’d love to see them do it. I have no envy in my heart at all.”

Meanwhile, Arsenal find themselves in the midst of a fierce title race, maintaining their position at the top of the table with a 3-0 victory against Bournemouth. With only two matches remaining, including a crucial fixture against Manchester United, The Gunners hopes of clinching their first league title since 2004 remain alive. 

Maitland-Niles, like many fans, is eagerly anticipating a triumphant end to the season, hoping for Manchester City to slip up and hand Arsenal the coveted title.

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