West Ham have suffered a big blow in their race to sign Arsenal midfielder Ainsley Maitland-Niles in the January window.
Last month (30 December), the ever-reliable West Ham insider, ExWHUemployee, claimed that the Hammers are interested in signing the 24-year-old who is out of favour at the Emirates Stadium.
Maitland-Niles is now all set to move to AS Roma, with Fabrizio Romano claiming that the deal is set to be completed shortly.
The transfer guru wrote on Twitter: “Deal set to be completed for Ainsley Maitland-Niles to join AS Roma on a straight loan move from Arsenal. No buy option included. Just final details to be agreed on the player side then Ainsley will fly to Rome. The negotiation started weeks ago – and now all set to be signed.”
Chris Wheatley has further added on Twitter that Arsenal wanted loan with an obligation to buy, but Roma have offered a significant loan fee.
West Ham are looking to bolster their squad in January as
they push hard to secure Champions League qualification this season.
While the Gunners academy graduate plays mainly as a
midfielder, he has been used as a right-back or left-wing back by Mikel Arteta.
He would have been a solid addition to the squad,
considering his versatility.
The fact that Roma are getting him on loan, without a purchase option should hurt the Hammers.
West Ham do have enough options at right-back, but a versatile player who can slot in various positions would have been handy for David Moyes.
He would have been a decent back-up option for Declan Rice
and Tomas Soucek as well in midfield.
However, as it stands, he is heading towards Roma instead.
In other West Ham news, a pundit says what Jurgen Klopp thinks of this exit-linked Hammers ace.
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