Ex-Liverpool player Didi Hamann believes Liverpool shouldn’t be giving any second-thought to signing Naby Keïta for £70m.
Naby Keïta is Liverpool’s top midfield target this summer.
However, despite his obvious ability and incredible potential ceiling, the small matter of his £70m price tag has caused a mass debate amongst fans and pundits alike.
Now, former Germany and Liverpool midfielder Didi Hamann has become the latest to weigh in on the conversation.
The Istanbul hero believes that Keïta’s ability would practically pay for itself, with the player capable of boosting Liverpool’s squad quality tenfold and give them an “even better” chance of navigating what promises to be a tense Champions League play-off in mid-August.
“Would £70million put me off buying Keïta? No,” Hamann told the Liverpool ECHO.
“Just getting through the play-off round and into the group stage of the Champions League would pay off a big chunk of that fee. With Keïta on board, Liverpool would have an even better chance of getting through.”
Hamann believes that if Liverpool are to prove their seriousness about shopping in the top bracket of the European transfer market, they are simply going to have to pay up and get on with it to secure their targets.
“You can question the fees being mentioned for the likes of van Dijk and Keïta, but if you want the top players you have to pay the going rate. It’s no good saying the market value is £30million because you aren’t going to get someone like that for that fee.
“If Liverpool had to pay £60million or £70million to get Keïta it wouldn’t worry me. You are buying a top player for years to come.”
While Leipzig have publicly remained adamant on their position of refusing to sell the 22-year old midfielder, Hamann subscribes to the notion that every player is sellable at the right price.
The former Liverpool man believes that the significant return of recouping £65-70m on their initial £15m investment last summer could be too good even for a club of their riches to turn down.
“If you buy a player for £15million and you get offered £70million for him a year later, it’s going to be very hard to turn down,” he reasoned.
“It’s a huge fee. As much as Leipzig are in the Champions League and want to be successful themselves, I can’t see them turning down £70million if the player is pushing for the move. Apart from Bayern Munich, any club would think about it.”
“Liverpool’s interest has been well known for a while so it wouldn’t surprise me if they have already got a replacement for Keïta in the pipeline. Leipzig have the best academy in the league so it might be the case that it frees up a space for an outstanding youngster coming through.
“Sometimes the fee is so good you have to let a player go. I think that will be the case with Keïta.”