Riyad Mahrez is currently on strike.
The brilliant Algerian, who many Reds desperately wanted Liverpool to sign during the January window, has downed tools – after Leicester City refused him an exit to Manchester City.
Pep Guardiola’s side offered £65m on deadline day, but the Foxes refused, and according to the Echo, Liverpool’s behaviour in the transfer market influenced Leicester’s decision.
Ian Doyle claims that with Liverpool signing Virgil van Dijk for £75m and selling Coutinho for £142m, Leicester felt directly entitled to demand £80m in cash for Mahrez – who’s won the Premier League, the Premier League Player of the Year award, and actually has more goals/assists than the Brazilian since arriving in the top flight.
Leicester would previously have sold for closer to £50m, which would have seen Mahrez get his dream move to the Etihad, but the hiked prices Liverpool dealt for set a January precedent.
While Liverpool were not willing to keep an unhappy player (Coutinho) at the club for a second consecutive window against his will, Leicester stood firm.
They are however paying for the decision and with Mahrez not turning up to training, his summer valuation will likely decrease.
So perhaps Claude Puel’s side have actually shot themselves in the foot.