In spite of several reports claiming that Riyad Mahrez has ‘agreed to join’ Arsenal from Leicester City, (such as the one reported in The Independent) a recent update from The Guardian’s deputy editor Ed Aarons on his twitter account has presumably brought the story’s excitement to a momentary halt.
Ed Aarons put up a tweet in the early hours of the 23rd of July claiming that the Algerian star’s agent has denied any interest from Arsenal .
Here is what Aarons said on twitter;
Riyad Mahrez's agent has denied there is any interest from Arsenal in player despite reports in France today #lcfc
— Ed Aarons (@ed_aarons) July 23, 2016
Most reports that have covered this story so far, have cited one particular source while claiming that Mahrez to Arsenal looks like a set or a done deal. Eurosport France,( whose story came out approximately 15 minutes before the tweet from Aarons) that is now being cited the world over, have claimed in their report on this story that according to their information, Mahrez should commit to Arsenal.
However, taking from Ed Aarons’s tweet as well as a piece by Ben Fisher in The Guardian , which has quoted Leicester City captain Wes Morgan, and his desire that Mahrez stays, as well as the Foxes’ manager Claudio Ranier’s confidence that the star player will commit, there is sufficient reason to believe that this could be a boisterous reaction to a story that has spread like wildfire.
Well, to say the least, almost every story about Arsenal and transfers around the club has been spreading like wildfire.
If one was to assess Arsenal’s primary need in their squad, it is undoubtedly that of a striker. Mahrez, Leicester and premier league’s star player last season, is an orthodox winger.
A player with natural ability, Mahrez is a creator, attacker, and importantly, a natural dribbler, not unlike Alexis.
If these stories that are doing their rounds are to be believed, it is difficult to imagine what Arsene Wenger’s plan really might be bringing Mahrez into the squad. With Alexis Sanchez injured, a very crucial and important wing player’s shoes need to be filled. In the larger scheme of things, one can imagine Wenger playing Alexis as the loan striker ( in the event Arsenal do not sign a striker, although I really hope that does not happen!!) with Mahrez playing behind him.
However, it is best not to speculate or take any mouthpiece’s word as golden till a deal has been announced by Arsenal themselves.
Riyad Mahrez, (if not Arda Turan) would be a missed opportunity, if at all these reports are to be believed.