West Brom are in talks over a loan deal for Ainsley Maitland-Niles but still face resistance from Arsenal, who are yet to decide whether a spell at The Hawthorns would be beneficial for him.
Maitland-Niles has been on the fringes of Mikel Arteta's squad this season and has racked up a reasonable 21 appearances in all competitions. Just six of those have come from the start though, leading to reports of frustration at his role in the squad.
The 23-year-old is believed to be targeting a place in Gareth Southgate's England squad for this summer's European Championship and that is not something he is likely to attain unless he is starting regularly. A move away is perhaps his only hope then, and The Athletic say that Sam Allardyce's West Brom are very keen on him.
David Ornstein writes that the Baggies are 'pushing hard' to bring him in, but Arsenal still believe he could have a role to play in their season, and only want to send him out if it will benefit his development. Arteta is yet to be convinced that dropping him into a relegation scrap with a team who play a drastically different style of football will provide that.
The report notes that there is interest from an unnamed 'current top four' Premier League team. That is likely to be either third-placed Leicester or West Ham, who sat in fourth at the time the piece was written.
Arsenal would prefer to send him to one of those sides, but it is said that the other interested party has other priorities before they can look at another loan deal.
With just days left of the transfer window, then, we may be in for an interesting stand-off - do the Gunners ship him off to the lower reaches of the table, or wait for their preferred option at the risk of no move coming off?
The loan signing of Martin Odegaard from Real Madrid pushed him further down the pecking order in his preferred position, while Hector Bellerin, Cedric Soares and Kieran Tierney are each preferred to fill the full-back positions where Maitland-Niles has proven a capable deputy.
He did start as recently as two weeks ago, however, and it isn't believed Arteta would be against keeping him around as cover for the second half of the season.
What Arsenal decide may come down to how hard the player pushes for a move. As things stand, it's understood that he is keen to go out on loan, but hasn't forced the issue - something that may change ahead of Monday's deadline.
Source : 90min