It’s often hard to measure the success or quality of a footballer at the age of 21, regardless of what some fans may have you believe. They’re often going to be developing and progressing for a few more years yet, and when they reach the age of around 25, you can probably get a good idea of how their career is going to turn out. So then, to all of the Arsenal fans who felt the need to criticise Ainsley Maitland-Niles’ performance against Huddersfield at the weekend, we’d be curious to know what it is you do on a day to day basis.
Handling it maturely
We understand that you want to be vocal and we understand that you feel you have a ‘right’ to let the world know what you think, but just consider this: these are young lads doing everything in their power to improve on a week to week basis, and they’re playing in arguably the best league in the world. So, with that being said, it’s time to step back and really appreciate Maitland-Niles for his response to these ‘haters’.
The youngster took it upon himself to calmly and very politely respond to his critics, letting them know that he’ll do his best to be better in the future. Whilst that may be brushed off as being the ‘correct’ way to respond to these type of folks, it can be easy to get dragged into the chaos of social media.
Instagram, in particular, gives you the kind of open access to someone’s life that you just rarely would’ve been able to acquire in years gone by. Gunners fans particularly seem to be insistent on giving themselves a bad reputation in this manner, as opposed to taking the more ‘mature’ approach to things. I mean come on, they felt the need to say these things after Arsenal had picked up the three points – which is surely more important than any individual performance.
We might be getting a little bit too invested in this, but we still think Maitland-Niles has been given the rough end of the stick here. He isn’t necessarily an out and out midfielder and he was thrust into the kind of position that he isn’t used to. We aren’t making excuses for him, either, we’re just saying that fans should take the win, and appreciate his honesty on social media.
What did you think of Ainsley Maitland-Niles’ game?