Last Updated: 13/05/19 11:45pm
Riyad Mahrez says he has no doubts about his ability and is “very happy” at Manchester City after ending a difficult first season at the club in style.
The 28-year-old made just his 14th league start for City in their 4-1 victory at Brighton on Sunday, following his club-record £60m move last summer, and scored a brilliant third goal to help seal the Premier League title by one point from Liverpool.
Mahrez admits competition for places is “part of the game” and believes he has the right temperament to make a big impression for Pep Guardiola next season.
“It is not easy to come to a team who are settled, who have players who play,” said Mahrez. “That squad did everything last season.
I am not going somewhere else because I don’t play.
“I knew it would not be easy in my first year but I am very confident in myself and have no doubts about my quality. I knew that when I had my chance I would take it. I scored at Brighton and helped the team.
“I am very happy here. I am not going somewhere else because I don’t play. It’s part of the game. I need to be strong, stay strong. It’s part of my personality, I never hide away from things.”
Mahrez, who had been an unused substitute in the previous six games, has now set his sights on finishing the campaign by achieving an unprecedented domestic treble, by winning the FA Cup final against Watford on Saturday.
“I’m very, very happy,” said Mahrez of his second league title, to add to the trophy he lifted with Leicester in 2016.
“It’s an amazing feeling. I think we deserved to win it, but we have to give credit to Liverpool and thank them because they are an amazing team as well. We were a bit better, 98 points over 97.
“It was very tough. It wasn’t easy. We stayed focused, played our games like we do every time. We never change our plans. That made the difference.
“198 points in two seasons, what can you say? I hope we’re going to do the treble. We’re going to enjoy first the double and then we’ll see.”
Mahrez missed a penalty over the bar late into a meeting with the Reds last October but the Algeria international says the incident didn’t play on his mind.
The winger, who scored 12 goals in all competitions, said: “No. Of course if I scored we would have had two more points but in some games I scored and we won 1-0.
“So we are not going to count everything. It’s about what we did.”