EPL Rumours: Riyad Mahrez rejects contract with Leicester City
The winger was awarded the PFA player of the year award for his performances last season.
Riyad Mahrez is set to reject Leicester City’s offer of a new contract after he has reportedly decided to seek a transfer away from the Premier League champions.
In what will come as a significant blow for the side who embarked on an astonishing run to the Premier League trophy last year, The PFA Player of the Year Mahrez, who still has three years to run on his contract is rumoured to soon ask to leave the club.
Leicester were willing to offer him a new deal believed to be in the region of £100,000 a week, but Mahrez is believed to be unwilling to extend his stay at the King Power Stadium and is now on the lookout for a new club with immediate effect.
Riyad’s friends and family were initially sceptical of a move to England, believing that his style of play would be more suited to the Spanish League but Mahrez had an incredible season in the English top flight last year.
Claudio Ranieri will be disappointed to lose two critical cogs of his team with N'Golo Kante joining Chelsea. Leicester fans were thrilled when Jamie Vardy turned down Arsenal earlier in the transfer window and thought it would set a precedent for his teammates to stay on at the club for at least another year but unfortunately that hasn’t turned out to be the case.
The Italian manager was only recently optimistic about Mahrez’s future saying that he was confident the midfielder would stay.
“He remains with us. He’s not the kind of man who will say: ‘Coach I want to leave.’ He is happy here,” Ranieri had said at the club’s training camp in Austria.
Also read: The A-Z of the 2016/17 Premier League season
According to France Football, though, Mahrez will now look to depart the club that he was won worldwide acclaim with. Mahrez would have no shortage of suitors both in the Premier League and abroad if he is indeed on the market. Barcelona, PSG and Arsenal are two clubs who have shown a serious interest in the past and that list will only be lengthened in the days to come.
If Leicester were indeed to lose their talisman, they’d have to find a player to replace the 28 goals and assists the Algerian contributed to their title-winning campaign last year, and soon. The club have signed Nigerian star Ahmed Musa who can also fill in an attacking role but they would surely have to dive back into the transfer market for a high calibre replacement.