Over the summer, one of the most outstanding transfer battles was that of Liverpool trying to sign Naby Keita from RB Leipzig. While the Reds failed to land their man, unable to convince RBL to part with their prized asset this year, they have agreed a deal for next season. The arrangement of the transfer now – to avoid missing out next year when a lower release clause kicks in – will see Liverpool secure one of the best players in the Bundesliga.
According to Jürgen Klopp, the Liverpool manager, they have signed the best player in the whole of the German top flight – alongside Spaniard Thiago Alcantara.
‘I’ve got lots of contacts in Germany and I’ve never got so many congratulations messages after we signed him,’ Klopp said, according to The Mirror.
‘He is the best player in the league. I’d have preferred him this season!
‘Last year together with Thiago Alcantara they were the best in the league. He’s done that in different leagues too.’
Dynamic and exciting on the ball, the Guinea international scores goals, creates them and stops them all at once. To many, he is the perfect replacement for the number-8 shaped hole in the Liverpool midfield vacated in 2015 by club legend Steven Gerrard.
This changing of the guard at Anfield, though, poses interesting questions regarding the future of the likes of Philippe Coutinho and Emre Can. With the former desperate to leave and surely to go in Summer 2018 and the latter out of contract next summer, the signing of a new midfielder could cause problems for Liverpool in terms of getting Can to stay.
It looks like, though, that Liverpool have picked up their replacement for Coutinho a year early to avoid an arms race in the future. For many, he’s the signing of the summer already.