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Claude Puel Slaps £100m Price Tag on Rumoured Liverpool and Arsenal Target

£75m for Virgil Van Dijk, £142m for Philippe Coutinho…£100m for Leicester City’s Riyad Mahrez?

Leicester City v Liverpool - Premier League Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

“One more thing: the price of the brick going up.”

-Marlo Stanfield

The one lesson everyone remembers from Economics 101 is that prices rise or fall as a function of the laws of supply and demand. In Kingpin Stanfield’s case, control over the means of production resulted in higher prices for the unlucky pharmaceutical vendors of fictional Baltimore. In the reality of European football, the ungodly amounts of money flowing into the Premier League continue to do funny things to demand and the sorts of transfer fees bandied about.

Case in point, the idea of paying £100m for the Foxes’ talented Algerian a year ago would’ve been met with unbridled mirth; today, triple figures is “probably a bit too much, but meh.”

The silky winger has made no small bones about wanting to leave the club, but has been met with staunch resistance from the Leicester board despite rumored links to both Liverpool and Arsenal.

Leicester manager, Claude Puel, poor man, once again finds himself in the position of weathering transfer speculation over one of his players after just spending all of last season weathering the Van Dijk hullabaloo in his underwhelming year managing Southampton.

“It is speculation and we cannot respond to all the speculation with information,” the Frenchman said. “Perhaps, in the summer he will cost even more than £100m.

“It is always the same thing about Riyad. It is just rumors, noise about him and other players.”

With the 2016 Premier League champions predictably returning to mid-table obscurity over the past two seasons, the silky Algerian has communicated a desire to ply his trade elsewhere, but has nevertheless remained both a consummate professional and standout performer with seven goals and seven assists so far this season.

“We can see Riyad smiling and enjoying his football and enjoying playing with his team-mates and it is the same in training,” Puel continued. “After the training session, he continues to play head tennis, and I want him to get more rest.”

The Reds are dealing with their own high-profile loss following Philippe Coutinho’s protracted move to Barcelona and have been linked along with a Gunners side soon-to-be deprived of their own talismanic South American in Alexis Sanchez.

“All the rumors and speculation about Riyad, do the reporters want him to leave the club?” his current manager asked, one can only assume rhetorically

I mean, it would make good copy.

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