The Algerian’s form has returned and with it has seen the transfer rumours resurface. Premier League heavy-hitters Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur are the latest clubs linked with bringing Riyad Mahrez in – but how well would the winger fit?
Having won the PFA Player of the Year award in 2016, his performances had become inconsistent, but; under newly-appointed Leicester City manager Claude Puel, he looks as though he has returned to his best.
He has played a hand in five goals in his last eight Premier League games and possesses the ability to take on players – a quality Spurs are lacking. They have the vision from Christian Eriksen, the ruthlessness of Harry Kane, and Dele Alli’s trickery, but they are missing the player that can take a game by the scruff of its neck.
Take Mahrez’s goal against Spurs in Leicester’s 2-1 win. He danced on the ball as he unleashed an outside the box curler past the diving Hugo Lloris. It showed everything Spurs are missing: a hidden outlet out on the wings that can help divert defenders attention away from their key dangermen.
Their wide areas fail to possess a real talent. Other than Erik Lamela and Heung-Min Son, there is no competition for places on the flanks and this was highlighted for everyone to see following Lamela’s long-term injury.
Manager Mauricio Pochettino is yet to address the situation but surely Mahrez would be the perfect solution to his ongoing problem.
Although his performances appeared to stagnate last term and at the beginning of this campaign, it was not his class that seemed to be the problem but a sense of motivation.
At Leicester City, he has revealed that he yearns for Champions League football – an ambition rightly sought by the world’s best and an opportunity his current club simply cannot provide.
While he continues to ascertain mid-table mediocrity, Tottenham can make the transfer happen.
The move could aid in their quest for Champions League success, with their options out wide looking sparse and far between.
Yes, the rise of youngster George-Kevin Nkoudou is welcomed, but Spurs are in need of a player fully adapted to the Premier League.
Tottenham lack depth, a problem that has been brought to the forefront time after time. One injury to a first-team starter and all of sudden Pochettino is left looking to the heavens, wondering who to play in what position and which formation to utilise.
Mahrez can bring the sustainability needed to perform at the highest levels week in, week out and especially so if he rekindles the kind of attacking displays that led Leicester City to the title back in the 2015/16 season.
Whether the North London outfit act within the transfer market to bring their slow start to an end remains unclear. However, you cannot help but feel if they don’t, come May, they may be looking back on a campaign that could have finished so much better.