He played a full part in each of Arsenal’s six Premier League games after Mikel Arteta was appointed as head coach on December 20 but has featured in only four of the subsequent 12 top-flight fixtures, all from the substitutes’ bench and has spent about 70 minutes on the pitch in total.
Since the home draw against Sheffield United on January 18, Maitland-Niles has completed a whole match just once — in an FA Cup quarter-final win away to the same opposition on June 28.
The shortage of game time has led Maitland-Niles to seek pastures new and although he is under contract until 2023, he is thought to believe now is the right time to continue his career elsewhere.
Talks between Arsenal and his representatives were geared towards the matter coming to a head once the campaign is over, enabling Arteta’s men to focus on a push for European qualification.
Maitland-Niles feels there is a lack of trust in him from Arteta and he would welcome the chance to explore a fresh opportunity away from his boyhood club, with interest coming from England and Germany.
He has mainly been utilised by Arsene Wenger, Unai Emery, Freddie Ljungberg and Arteta as a makeshift right-back and watched other academy graduates leapfrog him. Central midfield is the player’s favoured position and where he feels best-suited to improve the side if given a chance.