ARSENAL loaned out-of-favour Ainsley Maitland-Niles to Premier League strugglers West Brom.
The 23-year-old has started just five top-flight games this season and is desperate for first-team football.
Ainsley Maitland-Niles has joined West Brom on loan for the rest of the seasonCredit: wba.co.uk
He agreed a loan switch until the end of the season with West Brom just before the transfer window slammed shut as he helps plot their great escape.
Maitland-Niles became the club’s fifth signing of the transfer window, joining Andy Lonergan, Robert Snodgrass, Mbaye Diagne and Okay Yokuslu at The Hawthorns.
The versatile England international attracted a wide range of interest despite failing to cement his spot in Mikel Arteta‘s first-team.
Southampton wanted to sign the struggling Arsenal star to boost their options at full-back.
Newcastle and Leicester were also chasing the five-cap Three Lions man.
Maitland-Niles reportedly told Arsenal he wants to be given more game time in midfield – but his chances there under Arteta were slim.
The London-born utility player is keen to strengthen his push for a Euro 2021 place this summer by playing more regularly.
Wolves also put in a summer bid and were said to be considering a fresh attempt this month.
But it is 19th-placed West Brom who have won the race for his signature.
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While Maitland-Niles seemingly favours a midfield role, he might be needed to do a defensive job for Sam Allardyce.
The Baggies have the worst defensive record by a stretch this season, letting in 50 goals.
They have a torrid goal difference of -33 as Allardyce tries to do what he has become famed for – guiding teams away from the dreaded drop.
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The versatile England international was struggling for game time at the EmiratesCredit: Getty Images – Getty
Sam Allardyce will be delighted to get Maitland-Niles on loanCredit: EPA