A number of Arsenal and West Bromwich Albion fans have taken to Twitter to comment on Ainsley Maitland-Niles’s display as the Baggies missed a great opportunity to get only their third win of the Premier League season.
The situation looked ominous for Sam Allardyce’s men at Burnley. Semi Ajayi was sent off after half an hour for a handball near the halfway line.
However, as the game reached its conclusion, it was the visitors who looked more likely to find a winner at Turf Moor.
Maitland-Niles had an attempt on goal. Mbaye Diagne managed to hit the bar from close range. And Matheus Pereira had an effort cleared off the line.
Unfortunately for West Brom, they were unable to find a goal. Nevertheless, plenty of fans have taken to social media to laud Maitland-Niles’s performance.
As shown by Whoscored.com, he made two tackles, two clearances and two interceptions. He certainly seemed to grow into the contest during the second-half.
It was arguably an intriguing move for Maitland-Niles to join the Baggies on loan in January. With the side in relegation trouble, it was always going to take a lot for the 23-year-old – who earns £35,000-a-week, according to Spotrac – to catch Mikel Arteta’s eye while he is away.
He still has a lot to prove before the end of the campaign. But it does appear that several Arsenal and West Brom fans felt that he was the best player on the pitch on Saturday – which is impressive given that the Baggies played two-thirds of the contest with 10 men.
With that in mind, here is how some of the supporters reacted to Maitland-Niles’s performance…
In some ways the nearly perfect away performance, especially with 10 men.
Solid in defence, midfield worked well and created chances on the counter. Johnstone a spectator the whole game. But our quality in the final third cost us the win. MOM was Maitland-Niles #wba
— Sunil Patel (@sjpatel212) February 20, 2021
Okay we know relegation is a certainty but Maitland Niles, Okay & Diange are very promising. Completely different team with them. If only we had them sooner! A 0-0 away to Burnley with 10 men for 60 mins isn’t too bad.
— Lewis Franielczyk (@LFranielczyk) February 20, 2021
He was brilliant and they should’ve won that game
— decade is the name♠️ (@just_decade) February 20, 2021
Ainsley Maitland-Niles dominating the midfield with 10 men. Love to see it
— Hobbs (@HobbsAFC) February 20, 2021
Maitland-Niles was superb in the second half for West Brom
— AMARIO MWAURA (@johnny_mwaura) February 20, 2021
We could have won that 3-0, frustrating. Maitland-Niles was superb in the second half though
— Andy Pitt (@andyjpitt) February 20, 2021
@MaitlandNiles playing excellent
— kieran Treadwell (@kieran140290) February 20, 2021
So @MaitlandNiles having a great game for West from today
— Dave (@Davepvickery) February 20, 2021
Diagne, Yokuslu & AMN have made such a massive difference to this squad. I hate ‘what ifs’ but it certainly begs the question… #wba
— All Things Albion (@AllAlbion) February 20, 2021
How much better is our midfield with mobile players in there? Thought AMN was excellent today. So much energy. Gallagher hassled all day. Okay mopped up and was calm in possession. So much better. #wba
— Spencer George (@uber_foods) February 20, 2021
AMN slander? One of the best players today
— j o e (@ftbl_joey) February 20, 2021
AMN was unreal today.
That energy, pace and skill in midfield is exactly what we’ve been crying out for all season.#wba
— Chris Hall (@CJHall83) February 20, 2021