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Manchester City: Riyad Mahrez was City’s main man against West Ham, suggests Danny Murphy

Manchester City: Riyad Mahrez was City’s main man against West Ham, suggests Danny Murphy

‘He was involved in every goal’ – Danny Murphy singles out one Manchester City player for praise

Former Premier League footballer Danny Murphy believes Manchester City’s Riyad Mahrez was the star of the show during the champions’ 5-0 victory in their first Premier League game of the season.

Mahrez did not get on the scoresheet at the London Stadium as City convincingly swept West Ham United aside, but Murphy singled out the Algerian for praise following his display on Saturday lunchtime.

The recent African Cup of Nations winner did manage to win the penalty that (eventually) led to City’s fourth of the afternoon, as well as providing the assists for two of Raheem Sterling’s three with the champions staking their claim for a third straight championship in emphatic style.

Murphy believed that Mahrez’s input was more deserving of recognition, lauding the winger’s end-product as City coasted to victory.

He told TalkSPORT: “He’s got his swag back. He’s got that confidence – he was involved in every goal [against West Ham]. And I think with [Leroy] Sane being injured, he’s going to play more. The one thing with Mahrez is his end-product.

“Sometimes he’s in and out of the game, but when he gets in the final third, he makes things happen. His goals and assists the year Leicester won the league were huge. His end-product is superb, and when you’ve got the runners that City have got, and the movement that City have got, you need someone like him or De Bruyne to pick the passes.

“And I could tell Sterling was very grateful for Mahrez’s contribution at the weekend – and although he actually got the headlines, if you watch the highlights back, Mahrez was superb.”

Barring the 2016/17 season, Mahrez has reached double figures in goals and assists in all competitions in three of the last four campaigns.

Having achieved that feat last year despite just 14 league starts, perhaps the absence of Sane (who earned 21 in 2018/19) will give him the chance to up his numbers further.

And after a successful first season at City from a silverware perspective, an especially creative start from Mahrez in the fledgeling campaign could yet be a sign that things are to continue in that vein.

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