Naby Keita is on the verge of signing for Liverpool this month from RB Leipzig. Liverpool and the Bundesliga side had originally agreed that Keita would move to Anfield at the end of the season. But following Philippe Coutinho’s move to Barcelona, Jurgen Klopp is desperate to get the deal done now.
Transfer guru Ian McGarry says a deal for the Guinea midfielder is now ‘close’ after talks between the two clubs.
“I do believe that an agreement is close to be agreed and Liverpool will have to play in the region of close to £12m extra to RB Leipzig in order to progress Keita’s registration in this window,” McGarry told The Transfer Window podcast, as reported by Daily Star.
“And why not? An extra £12m when you’ve just taken a profit of around £130m for what you paid for Philippe Coutinho, even with the (Virgil) Van Dijk deal put in there as well.
“I think Liverpool are moving up in the world. They are genuinely going up into that ‘super club’ atmosphere of a club who are willing to spend tens of millions of one deal and then another deal after that.
“Credit to (owners) FSG and for backing Jurgen Klopp’s judgement when he’s not returned any trophies so far. Clearly there is some sort of confidence in Klopp’s management because they will give him this amount of spending power.”
McGarry’s words come after Bundesliga expert Lee Price told the deal could happen in January itself.
Price, who is a reliable source of German football news, told Express: “Leipzig face Schalke in the clash of the weekend in the Bundesliga. Win and they potentially go second, lose and there will be a five-point gap.
“But it will be important for more than just the league table. Leipzig don’t play at home for another two weeks after this one and it’s likely what happens here could be a big indicator of Keita’s mindset.
“We saw Coutinho wave to all corners of Anfield days before he was sold to Barcelona and Keita could do the same.
“While the last few weeks have been difficult, it’s a club he holds in high regard and he wants to go out in good grace. He doesn’t want to be remembered with any bad feelings.”
Keita has also been keen on joining Liverpool early after Leipzig were knocked out of the Champions League. The Guinean would be cup-tied for the competition but would nonetheless take pleasure in joining the Merseysiders this month.