Leicester boss Claude Puel draws line under Riyad Mahrez saga following Man City loss
By Ron Walker
Last Updated: 11/02/18 11:21am
Claude Puel wants to "look forward" with winger Riyad Mahrez after he came on for the final 28 minutes of Leicester's 5-1 thrashing at Manchester City.
Mahrez had been in self-imposed exile from the Foxes, refusing to train with the club after they turned down a £60m Deadline Day offer from City, but he returned on Friday in time to make the squad for Saturday's game.
He was introduced from the bench and received a warm reception from both sets of fans at the Etihad Stadium.
"I've said a lot of times it was important Riyad came back to work hard in training," he said. "He has maintained good fitness to come back quickly. Now we need to look forward, to move on with all our best players."
Leicester fell behind with barely two minutes on the clock at the Etihad but were level before half-time after Jamie Vardy capitalised on Nicolas Otamendi's poor pass to equalise.
After the break, though, it was one-way traffic from the rampant league leaders, who put in a performance Puel said was "difficult to resist".
He said: "We had some luck to come back in the game after their first goal, we conceded the goals in a bad time just at the beginning of both halves.
"They killed the game with the second and took confidence, and then it's difficult to resist against a team like this. They press, they play between the lines. It's difficult to start and have a certain position against them - but it's a lot of goals conceded, which is a shame."
Leicester were easily second best and are now without a win in five games, but ahead of a crucial FA Cup clash with Sheffield United on Friday night, Puel wants the Foxes to get the heavy defeat out of their systems as quickly as possible.
"We need to forget this game," he said. "We played against a great team and we need to look forward now and prepare for our next game with confidence."