Tottenham Linked With Surprise Move for Arsenal's Ainsley Maitland-Niles

Spurs are reported to be plotting a move for Arsenal utility man Ainsley Maitland-Niles, because transfer silly season is in full swing and there is no stopping it.

While Willian was recently added to the long list of players to move between Arsenal and Chelsea, the intensity of the north London derby means moves from Spurs to the Gunners, or vice versa, are far less common.

But while a move for Maitland-Niles would hardly shake the London footballing landscape in the same way Sol Campbell did back in 2001, The Mail are ambitiously claiming that the 22-year-old is on the radar of José Mourinho's team, and could make a £20m switch in the weeks ahead.

Having been given his debut by Arséne Wenger in 2014, Maitlaind-Niles has gone on to make exactly 100 appearances for the Gunners.

He spent last season in and out of the team, but defensive injury crisis meant he became an increasingly important player for Mikel Arteta. He started the FA Cup final on the left of a back five, earning himself a winner's medal in the process.

Whether that will be his last appearance for the club he has served since childhood remains to be seen, but it's suggested that Spurs are keen to secure some competition for Serge Aurier, while they also value the youngster's impressive versatility.

With Arsenal open to selling their academy graduate to raise funds, a move doesn't seem like the most ridiculous thing in the world - though it would depend on Maitland-Niles willingness to move his current club's arch rivals.

Maitland-Niles started out his senior career as a central midfielder but has been utilised all over the pitch over the years, meaning he has struggled to find a rhythm. Most of his appearances have come at right-back, but his pace and athleticism have seen him used in wide midfield roles on both flanks. It has previously been reported he is keen to return to his natural advanced position wherever he ends up next.

From Arsenal's perspective, the sale could be used to offset a move for Lille defender Gabriel Magalhães. 90min understands they have won the race for the Brazilian despite a late charge from Manchester United, as Arteta looks to rebuild his defence for next season.

Source : 90min