Thursday 14 November 2019

Leipzig reject £66m Reds bid for star Keita

Naby Keita. Photo: Adam Pretty/Getty
Naby Keita. Photo: Adam Pretty/Getty

Chris Bascombe

Liverpool's latest attempt to secure Red Bull Leipzig's Naby Keita has been rejected despite an astonishing £66 million (€75m) bid.

It is the latest of several approaches for the Guinea international to be dismissed by the Bundesliga club.

Reds boss Jurgen Klopp is, however, on the verge of making his third signing of the summer as Hull left-back Andrew Robertson will undergo a medical at Anfield today before making a £10m (€11.3m) move. Keita remains Klopp's top target, but there has been no encouragement the player will be sold.

Speaking to German media yesterday, Leipzig owner Dietrich Mateschitz reiterated his stance.

Distrust "We don't sell any of our players just to get money," he told 'Bild'.

"Lately we got a €75 million offer for Naby Keita. No way! He has a contract and he will accomplish it.

"To sell him would not only be a proof of distrust to our fans but also the wrong sign for our players like Timo Werner, who is in demand too."

Keita has not yet spoken about this situation so it is unclear whether he will push any harder for a move, or even if that will make any difference.

Earlier this week, Klopp said he was reluctant to switch from his main targets, but admitted he might eventually have no choice if there was no possibility of securing a deal.

Klopp has sold two central midfielders in the last 48 hours, with Lucas Leiva moving to Lazio for £5m (€5.7m) and Kevin Stewart heading to Hull City for £8m (€9m).

Scottish international Robertson moves in the opposite direction to Stewart and will be given the chance to challenge James Milner at full-back.

Elsewhere, Inter Milan have asked Manchester United to include Anthony Martial in any deal for Ivan Perisic, although the English club don't want to let the French star go, and he does not want to leave Old Trafford.

With Inter intent on bringing in a star name this summer, they have so far played hard-ball with United in negotiations over the Croatian and refused to move from their asking price of £48m (€54m). They have made it clear that the English club would have to pay that price to get Perisic or at least offer a player in return, and have recently inquired about Martial.

United broached the possibility of Matteo Darmian going in the opposite direction, but are hugely reluctant to let Martial go. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

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