After six years at Leicester City, Nampalys Mendy eventually let his contract run down and left the Championship side on a free this summer.
Originally brought in to try and help with the exit of N’Golo Kanté, the midfielder never managed to fully settle at the King Power Stadium, and spent a lot of his time watching his teammates from afar, and even went on a loan to OGC Nice during the 2017-18 season.
The arrival of Brendan Rodgers didn’t help him either, and he spent the last few years struggling to get any sort of consistent game time, which he isn’t happy about, telling L’Equipe as much on Wednesday.
Now at RC Lens, where he gets to play Champions League football, the defensive midfielder was asked about his time in England, which he was delighted to unload about.
He said: “Everything was going well until (Claude) Puel got fired (in February 2019). Another manager arrived in Brendan Rodgers, and he gradually pushed me aside. I never head back. He just kept tell me: ‘I have nothing to reproach you for’. And the worst thing is that when I wanted to leave, the club refused. In the end, I was just waiting for my contract to end. Honestly, I’ve come alive again since that moment.”
He’s now much happier in France at Lens, where he has started all three of their Champions League games, and featured in three of their last six Ligue 1 fixtures.