Arsenal Reject Wolves' Opening Bid for Ainsley Maitland-Niles

Ross Kennerley
Wolves are likely just testing the waters with their first bid
Wolves are likely just testing the waters with their first bid / Pool/Getty Images

Wolves have failed with a £15m bid for Arsenal's Ainsley Maitland-Niles, although it's expected that Nuno Espirito Santo's side will return with an improved offer.

Maitland-Niles featured 20 times for the Gunners in last season's Premier League - 15 coming as starts - with his most valuable contribution came during the club's FA Cup triumph, playing 90 minutes in the quarter-final, semi-final and final en route to the club's 14th cup win.

Playing a prominent role in Arsenal's highlight of the campaign, it was thought that Maitland-Niles had turned a corner in his career in north London and set for a more regular role in the first team.

However, a midfielder by trade, the 22-year-old has rarely been utilised in his favoured central role, instead being forced to make do with wing-back roles on either side. Having grown frustrated with the lack of opportunities, The Athletic wrote back in July that the Hale End academy graduate saw his future elsewhere, and a summer move away was his desire.

Given that change of heart, Wolves swooped in to prize Maitland-Niles away from his boyhood club, but the £15m offer made has been rejected by Arsenal. As per Sky Sports, it's expected that the Midlands outfit will return with an improved offer, with Mikel Arteta's side holding out for closer to £20m.

Santo sees Maitland-Niles as the ideal summer addition, given his versatility allows him to bolster his ranks both centrally and out wide.

Maitland-Niles edges closer to the Arsenal exit door.
Maitland-Niles edges closer to the Arsenal exit door. / James Williamson - AMA/Getty Images

Arteta was thought to be against the sale of Maitland-Niles, although with a significant overhaul of the squad this window and finances needed to attain targets, the money garnered would aid the Spaniard in securing much-needed additions.

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