Riyad Mahrez Won't Be Leaving Leicester City Insists Claudio Ranieri

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Riyad Mahrez will be part of Leicester City's Premier League title defence, according to boss Claudio Ranieri.

Mahrez scooped the PFA Player of the Year award last season after a succession of dazzling performances inspired Leicester to an improbable triumph.

Heavyweight clubs from home and abroad have been linked to Ranieri's heroes during the close season but N'Golo Kante stands as the only major departure from the King Power Stadium after Chelsea met the France midfielder's buyout clause.

Jamie Vardy spurned Arsenal's advances by signing a contract extension and, after Ranieri penned his own four-year renewal on Wednesday, he expects Mahrez to be at his disposal for the foreseeable future despite numerous reported suitors for the Algeria winger.

"He stays with us," Ranieri told Sky Sports. "We wanted to keep all our players. Of course, Kante had the clause and Chelsea paid the clause.

"But Riyad does not have the clause and he will stay with us."

Ranieri conceded Kante's loss was a blow but praised Vardy's decision to stay.

"With N'Golo I always said we played with 12 men," he joked. "When the referee counts it is 11 but N'Golo was two midfielders and plus [Danny] Drinkwater it meant I always played three midfielders.

"Jamie is our strength, our point of reference and with him on the field you can score at any time."


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