Riyad Mahrez has confirmed that although he was disappointed to see a move away from Leicester fall apart over the summer, he is still playing for a club that he loves,
Riyad Mahrez has confirmed that although he was disappointed to see a move away from Leicester fall apart over the summer, he is still playing for a club that he loves, according to the Leicester Mercury.
Arsène Wenger is a known admirer of Mahrez and was interesting in bringing him to the Emirates, the Algerian international having first caught Wenger's eye in the youth ranks of French side Le Havre before making a £450k move to the King Power Stadium in 2014.
Despite Mahrez being an 'Arsenal type of player', it was actually Italian side AS Roma who came closest to signing the 26-year-old over the summer.
"I am settled, I’ve always been settled," Mahrez said. "Of course I wanted a new challenge, but it didn’t happen and that’s okay.
"Like I said, I wasn’t disappointed for myself because I love this club and I have been through everything with this club. We won the league, we were in the Champions League and we got safety in the last two games in the first year in the Premier League.
"I went from the Championship to the Premier League with this club. I have been through everything with this club. I am very confident here. I feel good."
Although AS Roma were understandably annoyed at not being able to sign Mahrez over the summer, deals to bring in Grégoire Defrel, Patrik Schick and Cengiz Ünder were mostly possible thanks to Mahrez staying in England.
Having seen their manager, Luciano Spalletti, leave the club to take charge of Inter Milan, as well as Mohamed Salah leaving the club for Liverpool, Eusebio Di Francesco lodged a number of bids to try and lure Leicester into a sale.
However, the Foxes remained adamant that the Algerian would be staying put and he has gone on to make 11 Premier League appearances this season, scoring two goals and claiming five assists.