From the first time that Riyad Mahrez made his statement that he hoped that Leicester would honour their verbal agreement from last summer to allow the Algerian to leave during this year’s transfer window it seemed certain that he would be moving to Arsenal. Even Arsene Wenger fuelled the rumours by stating: “Have we made a bid for him? No. Not yet. Not yet means it could happen, it could not happen,” said Wenger.
“I think he had a huge impact at Leicester when they won the championship, like everybody else,”
“It’s been a different season this year but it doesn’t take anything away from his qualities.”
That was five weeks ago, but there is still no real movement in the offing, and it would appear that Mahrez is very unhappy that Leicester have put such a large transfer fee on his head, while Wenger appears to have switched his interest to Thomas Lemar who is both 5 years younger and may be available for the same price.
If Arsenal do buy Lemar and Alexis Sanchez re-signs, then surely our interest in Mahrez would be ended. Then, as the Foxes manager Craig Shakespeare said: “He has to be professional. We have to be professional with him but, more importantly, he has to be committed and I think he has to show supporters, staff and players that.
“If he’s selected, he has to perform and if he doesn’t show commitment he won’t play. He’s got a contract with us so he has to understand that.
“I think it applies to everyone, not just Riyad. We all can have a little mood swing, all of us, but ultimately it’s about how long that lasts for.
“We haven’t had any bids and if we don’t have one, we’ve got no decision to make.
“The decision making comes when we have a bid and we can assess that when it happens.”
Well if Arsenal don’t make a bid, then we haven’t heard of any other club interested in paying that amount of money for the ex-Player-Of-The-Year have we?
Should we be feeling sorry for Mahrez?