Leicester are planning to offer Riyad Mahrez a bumper deal to ensure he turns down Arsenal and stays at the King Power.
The Telegraph are reporting that the Foxes’ billionaire owners are willing to hand their star man £100,000 a week if he snubs the Gunners.
According to several sources, Leicester will demand £30million for the Algerian if he does leave, but they are still hopeful that they can convince him to stay.
It’s not just Arsene Wenger that will be concerned by talk of a new deal, as Manchester United, Barcelona, and Paris Saint-Germain are all believed to be hot on the midfielder.
So far, he has refused to rule out the possibility of leaving the Premier League champions, who are also struggling to hold onto their other two star players, Jamie Vardy and N’golo Kante.
Of all three, Mahrez made perhaps the biggest impact last season. Vardy got the goals, but he would have arguably not done nearly as well without Mahrez’ assists.
Claudio Ranieri must be praying that the prospect of Champions League football next season and the small matter of £100,000 a week is enough to tempt Mahrez to stay.
With increased TV rights next season, it seems the traditional ‘big’ clubs are not having things all their own way, as other teams can now afford to splash out on huge contracts too.
Mahrez may also feel a certain sense of loyalty to Leicester, for whom he signed last year in a deal worth just £450,000, particularly as they have turned him into a champion – and Arsenal haven’t been able to offer their players that for 12 years.