Should Mahrez Push for a Move Away from Manchester City in January?
Riyad Mahrez has been one of the best-attacking midfielders in the Premier League for some time, ever since he propelled Leicester City to their stunning title win in the 2015-16 season. It came as no surprise to anyone when Manchester City swept in to sign him for £60 million in 2018. Pep Guardiola doesn’t seem to have complete faith in the player, though, choosing to use him as an impact substitute most of the time. Reports suggest that the 30-year-old is unhappy and could push for a move in January.
Rumours Suggest the Player is Unhappy
Many people would deem Mahrez one of the most talented players in the City squad, but in the 2021-22 campaign the Algerian seems to have lost his favoured right-wing berth to Gabriel Jesus. The former Fox only started two of the first eleven league games of the season and came off the bench in six. During his time in Manchester, Mahrez has always found it hard to establish himself as a nailed-on starter for Guardiola, and many think his talents are wasted.
The main problem for Mahrez is the fact that City have an embarrassment of riches in the attacking positions, and it’s a dogfight between some of the world’s best players for starts. Jesus, Bernardo Silva, Raheem Sterling, and Phil Foden can all operate on Mahrez’s preferred flank, and each of these players could make a strong case for inclusion in the first team.
Regardless of whether Mahrez stays or goes, the reigning champions are favoured to lift the domestic trophy once again. According to the bet UK odds at the time of writing, City are at 4/5 to be crowned Premier League winners again in May. Mahrez would love another title on his CV, but it would be bittersweet if he didn’t play a pivotal role in winning it.
Who Wants to Sign Mahrez?
Time is ticking for Mahrez at 30 years of age, and he will be aware that he only has one decent contract left in him at his peak. His value has dropped slightly since he signed for City because of his age, but there will still be plenty of suitors for a man of his talents. Analysts believe he is worth around £42 million currently, meaning that there are many teams that could afford to sign him. However, Mahrez is likely to want to join a club capable of winning trophies, at which he can be a key player.
Despite mainly using Mahrez as an option from the bench, Guardiola is unlikely to want the gifted winger to leave. He offers an incredibly strong option to win games late on, and he also enables City to battle in all competitions through rotation. If Mahrez doesn’t leave in January or next summer, his window for securing a big move may pass.
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