Riyad Mahrez is reportedly set to ask Leicester City to honour their agreement and allow him to leave this summer – putting four big Premier League clubs on standby.
The Algeria international who was named Player of the Year last season as the Foxes won the title, with his form buying him the attention of some of Europe’s biggest teams.
Mahrez, however, out of respect for Claudio Ranieri, decided to stay for one more spelling and help with their Champions League campaign, with the club reportedly giving him a Gentleman’s agreement that a transfer would be sanctioned the following summer.
Now the Telegraph report that the Algerian is ready to tell the club that he is ready to say goodbye after three-and-a-half seasons at the King Power, owing to his aspirations to continue playing European football.
Both Arsenal and Tottenham are considered to be at the front of the line for Mahrez’s signature, while Liverpool and Chelsea have also been mentioned amongst those who have interest in the player although it’s said that their will has since cooled off.
That would likely leave Arsenal and Tottenham to battle it out over the player.
Arsenal was on the verge of signing both him and his Foxes team-mate, Jamie Vardy last summer and it’s believed Wenger would likely be back in for Mahrez if he eventually becomes free.
Tottenham, however, would also be determined to swoop Mahrez. Mauricio Pochettino wants to add more width and flair to his wings and while a deal for Crystal Palace’s Wilfried Zaha remains his top choice, a grab for the 2016 Player of the Year could prove less impossible.
Tottenham was said to have made an enquiry over Mahrez in the January transfer window, but were told at the time that he was not in the market at any cost.
However, all that could literally change in the summer, and Leicester are still likely to hold out for at least £20million, despite the player’s form being noticeably not so impressive this season.