Olympique Lyonnais announces the arrival of English international Ainsley Maitland-Niles for four seasons. The former Arsenal FC midfielder, who was a free agent, has committed to the club until June 30, 2027.
Born in London in 1997, Ainsley Maitland-Niles joined Arsenal FC’s youth academy at the age of six. Impressing in all youth categories, he made his debut with the first team on December 9, 2014, against Galatasaray in the Champions League. This first appearance allowed him to launch his career at the highest level. He was loaned to Ipswich during the 2015/2016 season, where he played 32 matches in the Championship before returning to Arsenal.
As an English international and U20 World Cup Champion with England in 2017, Ainsley Maitland-Niles continued to shine with the Gunners and earned his first call-ups to the “Three Lions” national team. He was subsequently loaned to West Bromwich Albion (2021), AS Roma (2022), with whom he won the UEFA Conference League, and Southampton FC last year. During his time at Arsenal, he made 132 appearances and won 4 trophies: 2 FA Cups and 2 Community Shields.
As a versatile midfielder with over 200 professional matches under his belt, Ainsley Maitland-Niles will become the first English player to officially represent the club. Olympique Lyonnais is delighted with this new signing, the 4th of the summer transfer window, following Skelly Alvero, Clinton Mata, and Duje Caleta-Car.
Ainsley Maitland-Niles said, “I am very happy to sign here. If someone had told me at the age of 6 that I would one day be at Olympique Lyonnais, I could never have imagined it! I absolutely had to seize this opportunity. My favorite position? Midfield. I hope to establish myself in this position, but I am ready to work anywhere to help the team.”