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'Frustrated' Riyad Mahrez reveals how Leicester City blocked Arsenal transfer before Man City move

The Algerian winger wanted to leave the Foxes after their Premier League title success in 2016 but was forced to wait two years.
 

Manchester City star Riyad Mahrez has revealed Leicester City blocked a move to Arsenal after winning the Premier League in 2016 leaving the winger "frustrated".

The Foxes lifted the 2015/16 title in phenomenal circumstances, with Mahrez netting 17 goals and registering 11 assists as he scooped the PFA Player of the Year award. 

Like Jamie Vardy, Mahrez has now revealed he had agreed a deal to move to Arsenal the following summer, with Arsene Wenger keen for the Algerian to move to the Emirates Stadium.

However, Leicester blocked the deal and Mahrez didn't get his big-money move until 2018 when he joined Manchester City, two years later, with Claudio Ranieri's men forced to fight relegation the following campaign in a miserable title defence.

 

Mahrez had amitted he was left very "frustrated" by the failed move, as it would have allowed him to arrive "at the highest level" two years earlier.

Mahrez told France Football: "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. 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 [Arsene] Wenger who really wanted me. It was nearly all done with Arsenal in 2016. 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."

On joining Manchester City, he added: "He [Guardiola] was happy first. He said he was very happy to have me here.

"He said we're going to make big things together with the team."
 

I didn’t realise Arsenal was in for him, would that of been a good career move?, I doubt it looking at Arsenal now.

 

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Not sure we were fighting off relegation. Granted it wasn't the best of seasons domestically, but did he forget that that season we also manged to give Athletico Madrid a fantastic run for their money in the Champions League Quarter Final. Comes across as ungrateful, to me. Brilliant talent, however, where would he have been without Leicester taking a chance on him?

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In what way would going to Arsenal have been going to the "highest level"?

 

And there he is moaning about battling relegation, conveniently forgetting that we had a run to the CL QF that season, which is as far as Man City have got in his time there so far.

 

I'm still a huge fan of Riyad as a player but he does make it hard to like him as an individual.

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8 minutes ago, dayday said:

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

 

He was 25 when we won the title. So, if he'd been anywhere else at 24 he'd have missed out on what he'll eventually realise was the highlight of his career! :D

 

 

8 minutes ago, dayday said:

 

My agent had spoken to [Arsene] Wenger who really wanted me. It was nearly all done with Arsenal in 2016. I was really frustrated. 

 

 

So, if we'd let him go to the Arse at age 25, he could have been at Man City when he was 24 or 25? Not following you there, Riyad..... lol

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We did him a favour to be fair.

 

What good does this do saying that to the press now? I think the comments post both matches against them shows they're attempting to play mind games; Rodri, De Bruyne and now Mahrez coming out with weird little bits about us. Take any of it as a compliment honestly.

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funny how i never seen anything solid linking him to a move there. i cant see wenger going for both vardy and mahrez in the same window. also what does he mean he would've arrived at city at 24/25? who's to say he would've gone from arsenal to city anyway? lol 

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