Liverpool have abandoned their pursuit of Naby Keïta with it blatantly clear to Jürgen Klopp that RB Leipzig won’t sell this summer.
Well, that’s according to Dominic King. We’ve heard many contrasting reports in recent weeks and frankly, it’s impossible to know what to believe.
King’s opening line reads: “Liverpool’s record-breaking pursuit of Naby Keita is over for this summer after they accepted RB Leipzig are unwilling to do business.”
The Daily Mail reporter indicates that Jürgen Klopp has realised that RB Leipzig will not be bullied into submitting to Liverpool’s wishes.
Although, he writes that this “does not mean that Liverpool’s interest in Keita is permanently over and given he has a release clause in his contract that can be activated next summer, it is highly likely he will move to Merseyside in the summer of 2018.”
What this now means for Liverpool is that the Reds will need to pursue a proper alternative, with Dominic King indicating that Klopp is already actively pursuing other targets.
It has been clear during pre-season that midfield is not the most important area for Liverpool to reinforce with Klopp afforded a wealth of options in the centre of the park.
Rather, the Reds need a new centre-back with Virgil van Dijk the only name that has been linked that would solve the issues that Klopp has to deal with in the shape of Dejan Lovren.
It will be interesting to see who Liverpool will target in Keïta’s place with Klopp having said before that he only wants to sign his primary targets and not sign players for the sake of making up the numbers.
With that in mind, the midfielder that does sign for Liverpool this summer will be a player that Klopp believes fits in with his mantra and not one that will be there to make up the squad list.