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ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Riyad Mahrez once quit St Mirren trial after 'abuse' of Scottish weather

Leicester City playmaker Riyad Mahrez says he once quit a trial with St Mirren because the weather in Scotland felt like "abuse."

Before joining Leicester in 2014, the Algeria international began his career in the French amateur ranks, so he was excited to get a trial with the Scottish club.

But after initially excelling in friendlies, Mahrez told L'Equipe that things did not go as planned and he even had to sneak out of the club hotel.

"An agent, Jean Evina, told me he had trial for me in the Scottish First Division with St Mirren reserves," Mahrez said. "He paid for my ticket and I went with another guy from [boyhood club] Sarcelles, Dany Bekale.

"It went well. I played four friendlies and I scored seven goals -- I killed them. And then they made me wait for two-and-a-half months.

"I'd had enough. It drove me crazy, Scotland. It was cold. It was abuse. It was snowing and everything. I was so cold that one day I faked an injury to go to the locker room.

Riyad Mahrez was named the top player in the Premier League by the PFA, but his career wasn't always so rosy.

"It was physical and it was cold and we trained in the snow. I felt that I progressed. I wasn't allowed to go so I left in secret.

"Anyway, a few days later, my agent said: 'Riyad, I've sent you a ticket, you take the bus right away, get off at Glasgow Station and you get on the train to the airport, then you take the flight to Paris.'

"I did not speak English at all. I left my boots at the training ground -- I borrowed a bike from a guy from the hotel, I took my football trainers, I made my bag and I left without telling anyone, not even the lady at the hotel. I left via a staircase which avoided the reception."

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