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Riyad Mahrez reveals he nearly joined Arsenal and slams Leicester blocking moves away

Riyad Mahrez has revealed he ‘nearly’ joined Leicester and spoke of his frustration that Leicester blocked possible moves away from the club. 

The winger evenutually joined Manchester City in 2018 for £61million but had been stopped from leaving the Foxes before then. 

Mahrez thinks he was robbed of ‘two years at the highest level’ as Leicester refused to sell him to a big club until he was 27. 

Riyad Mahrez was frustrated that Leicester would not sell him after they won the league

Riyad Mahrez was frustrated that Leicester would not sell him after they won the league

‘After the title, if I’d left for a top team, it wouldn’t have been the same story. For me, it’s clear that I lost two years at the highest level,’ he told France Football

‘I lost two years! Because instead of arriving at City at 27, I could have been there at 24, 25.

‘Leicester blocked me. They told me: “You’re not leaving, you’re not leaving”. My agent had spoken to Wenger who really wanted me. It was nearly all done with Arsenal in 2016. 

Mahrez was blocked from leaving the Foxes when he wanted and nearly joined Arsenal

Mahrez was blocked from leaving the Foxes when he wanted and nearly joined Arsenal

‘I was really frustrated. It wasn’t easy to go from being the best player in the Premier League to being a part of a team fighting against relegation. It’s not the same job. Everyone is waiting for you around the corner.’

Mahrez won Premier League player of the year when Claudio Ranieri’s Leicester claimed the title in 2015-16. 

He has since established himself as an important squad player at City under Pep Guardiola but starts have been few and far between with Bernardo Silva preferred on the right.   

Evidently there is still some resentment towards Leicester’s treatment from Mahrez but he now has a Premier League winners medal and is chasing more silverware with City this season.  

Mahrez secured his move to Manchester City in 2018 but is not usually a first team starter

Mahrez secured his move to Manchester City in 2018 but is not usually a first team starter

Original article: https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-7673375/Riyad-Mahrez-reveals-nearly-joined-Arsenal-slams-Leicester-blocking-moves-away.html?ns_mchannel=rss&ito=1490&ns_campaign=1490

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