Granit Xhaka made a good impression when he arrived at Arsenal and looked very promising, although it was obvious that e needed to iron out his rash challengers and disciplinary problems, but now a year later he doesn’t seem to have progressed at all, in fact many Arsenal fans have said he has gone backwards and have called for Wenger to play Ramsey with either Elneny or Wilshere instead of the Swiss international.
But now it looks like Wenger will have another option to challenge for Xhaka’s position, as young Ainsley Maitland-Niles, who was only promoted to the first team this season, could now be ready to be played in his natural position in central midfield. After playing many times this season as a wing-back, Wenger finally gave the youngster a go in midfield against Ostersund, thanks to both Ramsey and Wilshere being left back in London, and the Boss sounds like he was pretty impressed with AMN. Le Prof said after the game when asked about Maitland-Niles porformance: “It’s his natural position. I think 80 per cent of his game was good, and I feel he can win the ball back well. Defensively he’s quite strong, he’s got good acceleration and it’s a positive game for a first run.”
If there is one thing that Arsenal have needed for years is a strong defensive midfielder, and with Coquelin departed we really have no other option than Xhaka in reality, but is it time for Wenger to start giving his position to AMN a bit more often?