Riyad Mahrez has missed Leicester training for a fourth time in a week since a proposed Deadline Day move to Manchester City failed to materialise.
The Algeria international has missed the Foxes’ last two Premier League matches and was absent as Claude Puel’s side returned to training at their Belvoir Drive complex after being given Monday off.
It remains unclear whether Mahrez has been given permission from the club to miss the latest session, or whether he is still refusing to attend and his availability for Saturday’s league fixture against Pep Guardiola’s side at the Etihad, is in doubt.
A friend of the player said that Mahrez has been left “depressed” by the club’s decision to not accept City’s final offer, believed to be a player-plus-cash offer worth an estimated £60m.
Puel, who last Friday said that the Premier League winner had been given some time off to clear his head, admitted after Leicester’s 1-1 draw with Swansea on Saturday that he expected “nothing” and his immediate focus was on the rest of his squad.
Asked when he expected the former PFA Player of the Year to return to the Leicester squad, Puel said: “I expect nothing. The most important thing is not to think about one player, but to think about my team and my squad.
“Today, just after the game, Riyad is not my preoccupation. My preoccupation is about my available players and to keep them in a positive attitude and to continue this good work.”
Mahrez, who still has two-and-a-half years left on his contract, last played for the Foxes in their 2-0 victory against Watford at the King Power Stadium on January 20.
Riyad Mahrez hands in Leicester transfer request after bid from Manchester City
Mahrez not at Leicester training after Man City move fails to progress
Deadline Day done deals: Every completed transfer in the winter window