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Feb 10, 2018 at 5.30pm UK at ​Etihad Stadium
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Claude Puel keen to move on from Riyad Mahrez saga

Puel keen to move on from Mahrez saga
© Offside
Claude Puel believes that it is time to stop talking about Riyad Mahrez after giving the winger a 30-minute runout from the bench against Manchester City.

Leicester City boss Claude Puel has admitted that he is keen to draw a line under the Riyad Mahrez saga after integrating the wantaway winger back into his squad.

Mahrez was brought on for the final 30 minutes of the Foxes' 5-1 loss at Manchester City - the team that he was desperate to join in a deadline-day move last month.

The 26-year-old missed a total of six training sessions and sat out games against Everton and Swansea City, but he was welcomed back into the fold for the trip to the Etihad Stadium after denying that he went on strike.

Puel is now hopeful that the sorry episode can be forgotten about, while also insisting that his side were unfortunate to ship five goals at the Etihad Stadium.

"The most important thing is that he came back to the training session, to the game," he told BBC Sport. "Now it's important to look forward, and put this behind us, with the next games coming up.

"The first half was good, but when we conceded the goal it was a bad time for us, it changed the game. And then the second goal was hard too, it was difficult to find a new feeling after that. To concede five is a harsh feeling for us. Of course it was tough for us against this team.

"We conceded a lot of chances in the first half, maybe got a little lucky, so at half time I tried to change things a little bit. But their second goal changed the game.

"I think it's difficult to play against Man City, we needed to resist, without giving away too many chances. But against this team you are always under pressure, and it was too easy for them to regain possession of the ball. because of their pressing. But we know it's a great team."

Leicester, who remain eighth in the Premier League table, return to action next Friday with an FA Cup last-16 tie against Sheffield United.

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Riyad Mahrez clutches the ball during the Premier League game between Leicester City and Brighton & Hove Albion on August 19, 2017
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