Riyad Mahrez ‘isn’t happy’ with his playing time at Man City this season, according to Algeria manager Djamel Belmadi.
Mahrez has made 14 Premier League appearances under boss Pep Guardiola this term.
He’s only played a full 90 minutes on six occasions, however.
Speaking about the winger’s situation, Belmadi said: “Mahrez isn’t happy in Manchester because he doesn’t play often, and he’s a fighter who wants to play all the games for his team.
“I can’t ask him to leave his club to play more in another, I’m not his agent, but the most important thing is for him to keep his fitness and to be ready for the next games of the national team.
“He’s our captain. I understand the fear of the fans, but, in my view, he’s got the ability to bounce back once again. I trust him.”
Mahrez is an extremely talented player who tends to play well for City when he does start.
The trouble for him is that he has to share minutes with players including Bernardo Silva, Ferran Torres and Raheem Sterling.
Guardiola has many attacking players at his disposal and cannot play them all at once.
Mahrez was an unused substitute in the recent 1-0 victory over Sheff Utd. That’s despite his great performance in the previous match, a 5-0 thrashing of Sam Allardyce’s West Brom.
The 29-year-old scored one and assisted one as City maintained their impressive form.
Mahrez would undoubtedly like to feature in every major game at the Etihad.
Being made a sub against Sheff Utd demonstrated that no matter how well he plays, he’s always at risk of sitting on the bench during the next game.
Mahrez has scored 31 goals and assisted exactly 31 more in 119 appearances for City.
The player was linked with a move to Real Madrid in September. A move reportedly hinged on their ability to offload Gareth Bale first.
Should Mahrez’s situation at City fail to improve, then the Spanish giants could come calling in the future.