Premier League • England

Former Arsenal man Ainsley Maitland-Niles heading to France after agreeing free transfer switch

Ainsley Maitland-Niles Arsenal July 2022

French giants Lyon have reportedly agreed to sign Ainsley Maitland-Niles on a free transfer following his Arsenal exit.

The 25-year-old walked away from the Gunners this summer and is thought to have fielded a number of lucrative offers for his services.

The midfielder, who can also play at the back, spent 20 years at Arsenal after joining their academy in 2003.

He graduated to make his first-team debut under Arsene Wenger in 2014, making his debut as a 17-year-old in the Champions League against Galatasaray.

However, Maitland-Niles was never able to secure a regular first-team starting spot and was loaned out to the likes of Ipswich, West Brom, Roma and Southampton during his time in north London.

He spent last season at St Mary’s but was unable to save the south coast club from the drop.

Arsenal opted against extending his contract in north London and announced that he would be leaving once his deal expired at the end of June after making 132 appearances for the club.

Football Insider reports that he is now expected to head to France and join a Lyon side who failed to qualify for Europe last season.

READ MORE‘Brilliant’ Arsenal star urged to move on over fear of being completely frozen out in north London