Manchester City club-record signing Riyad Mahrez hasn't started regularly for the Premier League champions, but Pep Guardiola has now explained why.
The Algerian joined the Cititzens from Leicester City in January 2018 in a deal reportedly worth £60 million.
Mahrez has only started 15 matches in all competitions this season, although he could get a chance to shine in the FA Cup on Saturday evening.
However, Guardiola insists Mahrez reduce role in recent weeks has been down to the superb form of Bernardo Silva and Raheem Sterling.
“I have a reason. I am the reason. He is not absolutely guilty or he doesn’t feel any special reason why," Guardiola was quoted as saying by Manchester Evening News.
“I am sad because he is training incredibly, he is an incredibly talented player but in this moment we have five strikers - for example in the last games Leroy hasn’t played.
“We have incredible players, like for example Bernardo and Raz in top, top form and that is the only reason why.
“There’s no particular reason, like being upset or something like that.
“He is a guy we are happy with, but unfortunately I am not kind with him, in the fact I cannot give him the minutes he deserves, so I’m sorry, that’s all I can say.”
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