Ainsley Maitland-Niles spoke to the media after making his Arsenal debut in the 4-1 win at Galatasaray. You can read a full transcript of what he said below:
on the experience…I couldn’t really explain it. I’m just really happy and I want to thank my family and God mostly for putting me here, and Arsenal for giving me the chance.
on when he found out he’d play…About 35 minutes into the game. Somebody told me that I would be coming on.
on his emotions about coming on…I was a bit nervous at first but it brought a smile to my face.
on what the boss said to him before he came on…He just said to mark Wesley Sneijder really tight, so I had to try and get close to him.
on playing against Sneijder…I was really, really nervous but I don’t think it went through my mind once when I was on the pitch.
on if he grew into the game when he came onto the pitch…Yeah definitely. I just wanted to get on the ball and play a few passes really.
on going from the Youth League to the Champions League…It’s really different. I thought that I would be here but with the under-19s, who played a game today, which they won 3-1. It was a great atmosphere, a great crowd and I want to thank the fans for coming.
on Stefan O’Connor making his debut too…Me and Stefan are really tight. We’ve known each other since we were young and I’m really proud of him.
on what he’ll do with the shirt…I think I’ll frame it and give it to my mum.
Copyright 2022 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source.