Men's Team

Laporte praise for 'unbelievable' Mahrez

Aymeric Laporte believes that leading scorer Riyad Mahrez is enjoying his ‘best moment’ for City right now. 

The Algerian winger has been in marvellous form for City throughout the campaign with his eye for goal complementing his all-round attacking threat and sublime creativity. 

Having been away on Africa Cup of Nations duty throughout January, Mahrez marked his return to Club duty by being on target again at the weekend, claiming a brace in City’s impressive 4-1 FA Cup fourth round win over Fulham. 

That took his overall tally for the season to an impressive 15 in all competitions. 

And reflecting on Mahrez’s impressive impact and all-round contribution, Laporte said the 30-year-old was in his ‘best moment’ right now and backed him to kick on and claim even more goals across the remainder of the campaign. 

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“Aside from the goals, I think you have to look at every player and what they can do, how they play, how they do everything,” the City central defender declared. 

“Riyad plays so good, he is unbelievable. His control all of the time when the long ball arrives, the commitment he shows in the game, he is unbelievable. 

“Right now, he is in his best moment, and he deserves more. 

“I am sure he will score more and more goals because he is working for it, and he has the talent also.” 

Goals have also been an important commodity for Laporte so far this term, with the Spanish international enjoying a hugely impressive campaign to date. 

And alongside his trademark defensive prowess and exquisite reading of the game, Laporte has also weighed in at the other end of the field, contributing three goals already this term – including a crucial late leveller in our 1-1 draw at Southampton last month. 

For his part, the centre half says the opportunity to assist the team in terms of attack  

“I am very happy. It could have been six goals! It is three and I am happy to help my team to win the games,” Laporte declared. 

“It is something special for a defender, I think. 

“We are not competitive [about who scores the most goals], but we just want to score to be happy because this is the only way to be happy I think. 

“The defender always has the bad parts of football. You can defend good but then there is always a mistake because every goal is a mistake. 

“I think it [scoring goals] is something very good for us as we can enjoy it a little bit more.” 

In the wake of last Saturday's FA Cup triumph against Fulham, City return to Premier League duty on Wednesday night when we play host to Brentford. 

Currently lying in 14th place in the table, Thomas Frank’s side have garnered widespread praise for their performances in this their first-ever season in the Premier League. 

The Bees proved tough opponents when we recorded a 1-0 victory in West London just after Christmas and Laporte is expecting an equally stern test this time around. 

“They are new here, but I think they are doing quite well,” Aymeric observed. 

“When we see a game when they play and the way they play, it is amazing. They play really well and have good results sometimes. 

“We have to be focused like we have been in the last few weeks. It is very important for us to stay focused on ourselves and what we can and cannot do. 

“We have to try and score more goals than them and that is all.” 

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