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According to the Mirror, Southampton and Watford are set to make moves for Arsenal star Ainsley Maitland-Niles next week.

What’s the story?

Well, the 23-year-old’s future at the Emirates Stadium is uncertain.

Maitland-Niles spent the second half of last season on loan at West Brom, where he unfortunately added a relegation to his CV.

England vs Croatia Match Day Vlog

England vs Croatia Match Day Vlog

Now, the Gunners are hoping to raise some funds to spend in the transfer market, and their No.15 could be a casualty of that desire.

Mikel Arteta wants Ben White from Brighton, while there has also been interest in James Maddison – two players who certainly won’t come cheap.

In fact, Arsenal plan to spend £250 million this summer.

As a result, Southampton and Watford could be given an encouraging response when they make their respective moves next week.

With Maitland-Niles potentially available, it may come down to a straight bidding war between the two Premier League outfits.

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Will this news spark Crystal Palace into life?

Despite the fact they’re currently managerless, Crystal Palace are also interesting in signing Maitland-Niles, according to Football London.

Sporting Director Dougie Freedman is said to have enquired about the £35,000-a-week man.

At risk of losing ground to Southampton and Watford, it will be interesting to see if Freedman and Steve Parish continue this pursuit themselves.

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To do so without a manager at the helm is risky business, as Roy Hodgson’s replacement might not even want Maitland-Niles.

In our view, it’s probably best to leave any new signings until a new manager arrives.

If the 5-cap England international is signed for big money, and then left on the scrapheap by whoever replaces Hodgson, it would be a disaster.