Mahrez Return Confirmed - He Sets The Record Straight
Leicester City this evening confirmed that Algerian winger Riyad Mahrez had returned to training today following the earlier speculation and the player himself had released some quotes in an attempt to stem the anger and clear up some 'assumptions' that he feels people have made on his behalf.
The club announcement was short and sweet and in confirming he returned to training, it read.
'Riyad Mahrez has today returned to training with the Leicester City squad. Riyad remains a greatly valued member of Claude Puel's squad and is focused, together with his teammates, on achieving further success with Leicester City.'
Sky Sports cover a statement he released to the press today to explain the last ten odd days.
'Over the past 10 days, many people claiming to be my friend have spoken about me and things they know nothing about. Off the back of that many people and journalists have made assumptions without properly checking the story, so I would like to clarify that all those so-called assumptions of why I was absent are completely untrue.'
Mahrez went on to say.
'Myself nor my advisers have ever made any statements about that, so all presumptions made are totally without foundation. Leicester City were always aware of my whereabouts and had knowledge of my thinking either directly or via my advisers. I have been a part of the Leicester City team that has achieved much success including promotion to the Premier League and being champions of the League. My goals have always been the same and I have always given my full 100 per cent when I play for the club, the fans, and my team-mates. Those goals remain the same today and in the future and, when I am asked to be a part of the Leicester team, rest assured I will continue to give my all.'
The proof will of course be in the pudding and Leicester themselves, if the above is accurate and they were fully aware, could've made that clear rather than leaving it to Puel's soft words and leaving the wriggle room for it to look like he was trying not to inflame the situation.
But equally Mahrez could've released a statement, reassuring fans in the process, and stating that Leicester knew where he was and presumably he had permission to take time out to get his head right once again.
With Puel saying he wasn't in contention for Manchester City, Sky say he could now be available and that he's travelled with the group so having spoken about City being a perfect chance for him to make a point - he may well just get that chance and show that not only he's committed to this season for us regardless, but also show Guardiola exactly what they missed out on.