Southampton boss Ralph Hassenhutl has revealed that he does not believe Ainsley Maitland-Niles understands the style of play that the Saints want to implement following his loan move to the South Coast this summer.
The Arsenal man joined the Saints on loan for the 22/23 campaign, but has managed just 17 minutes of Premier League action for his new side thus far, and was left out of the squad for their most recent clash with Aston Villa, which they lost 1-0.
And Southampton boss Hassenhutl has revealed that this is because he believes that Maitland-Niles is not yet ready to play for his side, with his work off the ball a particular issue, though he backs him to succeed eventually.
‘We have with Ainsley a lot of work to do also because he has to adapt to our game and this is something that takes time a little bit”, Hassenhutl began.
“We see also during the week what we ask him to do and especially in the midfield position it takes a little bit to understand how we want to do it”.
“It doesn’t make sense to throw someone in who isn’t ready for what we want to do. When he is ready and on the level we think he has to be then he will help us for sure”, he added.
“I think he’s a very good player on the ball but he has to learn that our game starts when the ball is not with us. You can see this is something he still has to learn. We are investing our time to make him better.”
‘I think this is something he had never needed to do in the clubs he was playing in.”
‘But meanwhile it’s modern football, this is a very crucial part, you can see this is still something he has to learn”, the Southampton boss added.
“He’s not the loud speaker, if you want, he takes responsibility on the pitch when he has the ball, definitely, he wants to show his qualities there.
“But I think to have a big impact in the future in football he has to add a few parts to his game he hasn’t had so far and we will help him doing this”.