Mahrez at Man City to ‘Win, Not Just Participate’

Published May 30th, 2020 - 05:51 GMT
 The Algeria international has had to battle hard for regular minutes under Pep Guardiola, but he considers that to be what football is all about (Photo: AFP)
The Algeria international has had to battle hard for regular minutes under Pep Guardiola, but he considers that to be what football is all about (Photo: AFP)

Riyad Mahrez claims to be at Manchester City to “win, not just participate”, with the Algeria international embracing competition for places and major silverware.

The 29-year-old winger knew what he was letting himself in for when completing a club-record transfer to the Etihad Stadium in 2018.

Despite being a Premier League title and PFA Player of the Year winner at Leicester, the highly-rated forward knew that he was joining a star-studded squad at City.

He has had to work hard for regular game time, with Pep Guardiola having plenty of alternative attacking options at his disposal, however, Mahrez has taken in 81 appearances across two seasons and scored 21 goals.

He also formed part of an historic domestic treble triumph for the Blues in his debut campaign, with an enviable collection of medals justifying his decision to swap the East Midlands for Manchester.

Mahrez admits that is why he pushed so hard for a switch to City, with Leicester having initially blocked his path, with personal ambition seeing him set lofty targets in each passing season.

“You have to stay motivated. I am a competitor, I am here to try to win something every season, every year," he said in the Manchester Evening News.

“It is part of my job and I want to do my job as best as I can. At the end of the day you want to win, you are not here just to participate. You want to win and that is the most important thing for me.”

Mahrez found the going tough at City to start with, as he often found himself restricted to an impact role off the bench, but has played his way into form and favour.

He is happy with how his career with the Blues has progressed, adding: “You have to get used to it at first but when you get used to it and you train a long time with Pep and everyone else it is easy.

“I don’t think you have to be physically strong [in the Premier League]. I adapted because I like the way we play, the way there is space, the attacking game, so that is my type of game.

“Leicester was more of a counterattacking team and at City we are more attacking, you have to break teams down. It is a completely different type of game. You have to adapt, and I think I am very good with that and happy.”

By Chris Burton


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