Pundit John Giles has claimed he was surprised that Riyad Mahrez made a move away from Manchester City this summer.

After seeing Ilkay Gundogan join Barcelona as a free agent earlier in the current summer transfer window, the winger joined Saudi Arabian club, Al-Ahli in a deal worth a reported fee of £30m.

With the new season just a week away from kicking off, one pundit has been sharing his views about the current state of Pep Guardiola’s squad.

Pundit baffled by Mahrez exit

Brentford FC v Manchester City - Premier League
Photo by Charlotte Wilson/Offside/Offside via Getty Images

Speaking in a recent video on the Off The Ball YouTube channel, Giles had this to say about City’s departures so far this summer and Mahrez, in particular.

He said: “They have lost a couple of good players, Mahrez is gone, Gundogan is gone. I’m surprised at Mahrez going. They’re two big players so he has to replace them.”

During his time at the Etihad Stadium, Mahrez made 236 appearances across all competitions, scoring 78 goals and delivering 59 assists along the way.

Manchester City v Bayern Muenchen - Preseason Friendly
Photo by Etsuo Hara/Getty Images

In terms of why he may have fancied a move away from the Manchester club, despite featuring in 47 games across all competitions last season, the 32-year-old was an unused substitute in the FA Cup and Champions League finals, which may have swayed him into starting a new chapter of his career in Saudi Arabia where he could be a regular starter.

Having scored 15 goals and delivered 13 assists across his 47 appearances last season, Guardiola’s side could end up missing his goal contributions if they don’t find a suitable replacement before the summer transfer window closes.

Moving forward, it’ll be interesting to see if the treble winners bring in a new winger over the coming weeks to help them replace the attacking power that Mahrez gave them.

Related Topics