Ainsley Maitland-Niles is back at Arsenal.
The midfielder, who can also operate at full-back, spent the second half of last season out on loan at West Brom and emerged with some credit despite suffering relegation with the club.
Just how long Maitland-Niles is back at Arsenal remains to be seen as football.london understands that he is one of several players that will be available to leave this summer on a permanent deal.
But until a club makes a move, he’s a Gunners player and was among the first batch to report for pre-season training at the club’s London Colney training base this week.
And ahead of next week’s fixture against Hibernian, Maitland-Niles was put through his paces alongside the likes of Thomas Partey, Nicolas Pepe and Emile Smith Rowe on day one of pre-season training.
For the 23-year-old it was the first time he had been at London Colney since departing for the Hawthorns over six months ago.
Therefore, it seemed he was keen to make it known that he had returned.
As spotted in the ‘Behind the scenes at Arsenal training centre’ video uploaded to YouTube, at around the 0.24 minute mark, Maitland-Niles comes strolling through with a couple of parcels in one hand and a box in the other.
He says: “We’re back, we’re back” as he walks past the cameras to get changed into his training gear.
Maitland-Niles certainly seemed happy to be back, although he has already revealed that he would be willing to “kiss Arsenal goodbye” if the decision to cash in on him is made.
“Where they [Arsenal] see me. If it works out it works out, if it doesn’t then kiss Arsenal goodbye,” he told the Telegraph last month. “It’s been a long journey but a proud one at that.
The summer window is officially open, and it’s going to be tough to keep up with the comings and goings in and out of the Emirates.
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“Maybe they still want to do something and things could change.
“If not, there’s always other teams. It would be easier to do it now than waiting for pre-season to kick in and everything is super busy. And they can’t answer their phones because they are doing too much work.
“You know how the football world works.”