Soccer

Arsenal’s Maitland-Niles tells Arteta ‘play me or sell me’ in Gunners ultimatum

Arsenal youngster Ainsley Maitland-Niles has issued an ultimatum to Mikel Arteta ahead of the summer transfer window: 'Play me next season or sell me.'

Maitland-Niles, 23, spent the second half of last season on loan at West Brom after being deemed surplus to requirements at the Emirates.

Despite the Baggies suffering relegation from the Premier League, he produced a string of impressive performances and has even been linked with a move to Manchester United this summer.

It remains to be seen whether there is a place for him in Arteta's squad, nevertheless, with two years still to run on his current Arsenal deal.

But the England international says he is still yet to receive any contact from Arteta or Gunners director Edu regarding his future.

“If I was to get a phone call from someone at Arsenal and they said they'd like a meeting tomorrow, then it would be easier that way," Maitland-Niles told The Telegraph.

“They can tell me whether they've got plans to play me in the future or if they want to sell me.

“I've heard they want to make some space [in the squad] and some money so I'm not sure.”

Should Arteta fail to offer guarantees over his game time next season, Maitland-Niles admits it could be time to "kiss Arsenal goodbye" this summer.

He added: “I want a decision. I want some clarity. And then hopefully I can get to work with whoever I need to get to work with.

“Whether that is finding a new club or whether that is carrying on with my training. I would like some kind of indication of what is happening. Where they [Arsenal] see me.

“If it works out it works out, if it doesn’t then kiss Arsenal goodbye. It’s been a long journey but a proud one at that.

“Maybe they still want to do something and things could change. If not, there’s always other teams.

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“It would be easier to do it now than waiting for pre-season to kick in and everything is super busy.

“And they can’t answer their phones because they are doing too much work. You know how the football world works.”

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