Riyad Mahrez.

Marseille president rejected chance to sign Riyad Mahrez in January

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Oh, hindsight, what a wonderful thing you can be sometimes. Just ask Marseille president Vincent Labrune, who is probably slumping in his executive leather chair as he realises what a fool he has been.

This is all about Riyad Mahrez, who alongside Jamie Vardy has propelled Leicester City to the top of the Premier League after 15 games. He hit new heights on Saturday, scoring a hat-trick against Swansea City, taking his tally for the season to ten.

Needless to say, the 24-year-old has already proved he is a top player – he's bagged six assists as well – and has reportedly attracted the attention of both Arsenal and Manchester United as a result.


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But less than 12 months ago, he was not good enough for the Ligue 1 outfit, at least according to Labrune, who took the trouble to completely slam the person who suggested they sign him in the January window.

France Football has obtained a leaked email from Labrune, allegedly sent to him on December 30, 2014, recommending two players, one of which was Mahrez. We don't know who the other player was, but by jingo we hope it's Vardy.

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Here is that email in all its glory:

"Do you really think that Leicester players now have a place at Olympique Marseille, in the project we've got?

"To save time, let me tell you, we try to be professional and qualitative with our recruitment. The probability of us taking this sort of player is zero.

"Don't take this the wrong way, but I don't put up with people taking me for a sucker."


The Mahrez show

While Vardy has been nicking most of the headlines with his record-breaking run of goals, it is Mahrez who has been running the show. Indeed, the Algeria international is both second in the Premier League goal and assist charts.

What makes the story even more sensational is that he cost Leicester just £400,000 to sign from Le Harve, so he was essentially a risk-free signing for any club willing to take him.


Should the Foxes decide to cash in, they will likely bag a fee of over £20m, not that they should have any interest in letting their key players leave anytime soon.

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