Everton in talks over loan move for Arsenal's Ainsley Maitland-Niles

Tom Gott
Maitland-Niles is wanted by Everton
Maitland-Niles is wanted by Everton / Visionhaus/Getty Images

Everton have opened talks with Arsenal over a loan move for versatile midfielder Ainsley Maitland-Niles.

The 24-year-old, who has two years left on his contract at the Emirates Stadium, has made two substitute appearances so far this season but has struggled to convince manager Mikel Arteta to hand him regular minutes.

Maitland-Niles spent the second half of last season on loan with West Brom and could be set to follow that up with another loan switch as The Athletic claim that Everton are keen to bring him in on a temporary basis with a view to a permanent deal.

A formal bid has been lodged and Arsenal are yet to respond, considering their options before making a final decision.

The two sides are understood to have a positive relationship, having recently done business over Theo Walcott and Alex Iwobi, while Arteta also has a good bond with the Toffees from his playing days.

Everton hope to see that work to their advantage and believe Arsenal will be willing to offload Maitland-Niles, who has been reluctant to leave his favoured midfield role to fill in at right-back, for the right price.

After sealing his move to West Brom last season, Maitland-Niles claimed he was 'rotting away' at Arsenal because of a lack of minutes at this crucial stage of his career, and he was later believed to have informed his parent side that he planned to leave this summer.

With two years left on his deal, this is the last time that Arsenal will be able to demand a hefty fee for Maitland-Niles, whose value will drop as he approaches the end of his deal.

Should Everton convince Arsenal to let him go, Maitland-Niles would become their fifth signing of the summer, following Demarai Gray, Andros Townsend, Asmir Begovic and Andy Lonergan in sealing moves to Goodison Park.