Arsenal midfielder deal not done yet as Edu, Arteta stand firm over terms

Edu and Mikel Arteta, Arsenal,

Ainsley Maitland-Niles’ loan transfer from Arsenal to Roma is still not a foregone conclusion as the Gunners stand firm over the terms, according to a report.

Maitland-Niles, who emerged as an exciting talent at the start of his Arsenal career, has suffered a recent decline. In fact, after spending the second half of last season on loan at West Brom, he wanted out altogether.

Everton wanted to sign him. After Arsenal blocked the move, though, he took to social media to vent his frustration at his lack of playing time.

This season, Maitland-Niles has played eight Premier League games. However, his total minutes amount to less than three 90-minute stints.

As such, links with a move away for the England international are resurfacing. This time, though, Roma boss Jose Mourinho wants to sign him.

Earlier reports have revealed how the loan deal looks close to completion. What’s more, Roma’s ex-Chelsea striker Tammy Abraham is playing a key role in convincing Maitland-Niles to move.

Despite the progress, Il Tempo (via Sport Witness) reports that there is a fresh stumbling block in the deal.

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta and transfer chief Edu do not want to let Maitland-Niles leave and allow Roma to have the option to buy him. Instead, they want an obligational purchase clause in the deal based on appearances.

Ainsley Maitland-Niles is on his way to Roma

Arsenal's Ainsley Maitland-Niles has been linked with a move to Roma.

Roma, though, want an option to buy so they can consider a permanent deal at the end of the season.

The development is ‘no small problem’ for the Serie A club, Il Tempo adds. What’s more, it mirrors the situation with Granit Xhaka, who was a target from Arsenal for Roma last summer.

Alex Telles among five under-the-radar Premier League players who stepped up in December

Maitland-Niles is still only 24 so has the best years of his career ahead of him.

But he does not look to have a future at Arsenal, where he has not played in the Premier League in seven matches.

Arsenal suffer striker transfer blow

Dusan Vlahovic Fiorentina

As for potential transfer arrivals at Arsenal, meanwhile, up front is one area which is a pressing concern.

Alexandre Lacazette and Eddie Nketiah are in the final year of their contracts, while Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang remains frozen out following a disciplinary breach.

As such, a new striker is becoming a bigger priority as the situation continues to stay the same.

Fiorentina’s Dusan Vlahovic is one player whose future is also up in the air after he refused a new contract. However, Arsenal have reportedly suffered a blow in their attempts to sign him.