Ainsley Maitland-Niles has revealed that he intends to make the most of his third loan spell at St Mary’s ahead of an uncertain summer. The versatile midfielder and defender has expressed a keen interest in staying with Southampton as they prepare for life in the Championship. Maitland-Niles was part of a Saints squad that experienced relegation for the second time this season, but he remains optimistic about the future and is looking to take positives out of his loan spell.
Maitland-Niles joined Arsenal when he was just six years old and went on to make 132 appearances for the club. However, he recently revealed that he is leaving his boyhood Gunners, and his focus is now on fulfilling his potential at Southampton. He is likely to attract interest from other Championship clubs, but he may hold out for a Premier League opportunity.
Despite Southampton’s relegation, Maitland-Niles says the squad is hurting but trying to recover. The team has one game left in the Premier League season before a two-month break precedes their first Championship campaign since 2011-2012. The midfielder says the main focus of the squad is to try and entertain supporters in the final game against Liverpool.
Maitland-Niles says he has grown up as a person this season and has learned a lot about himself. He says he has had good players around him throughout the season, which has helped him to develop his game. He adds that he has tried to fulfil his responsibilities to the best of his ability this season and is looking forward to a new chapter in his career.
The midfielder’s positive attitude is a reflection of the resilience displayed by Southampton this season. Despite injuries and poor form, the team has stuck together through thick and thin and is preparing for life in the Championship with renewed hope. Maitland-Niles’ experience and versatility will be invaluable assets for the team in the coming season, and fans will be eagerly anticipating the contribution he can make to the squad.