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Liverpool ‘100 per cent’ won’t sign Naby Keita this summer - RB Leipzig

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Published in Football Transfers
Sunday, 30 July 2017 16:40

The 22-year-old has emerged as one of the most sought after stars in European football but now looks set to remain with the Bundesliga club

RB Leipzig head coach Ralph Hasenhuttl insists Naby Keita will "100 per cent" be staying with the Bundesliga club for the upcoming season, ending speculation linking him with a summer move to Liverpool.

The 22-year-old midfielder was the interest of two bids from Jurgen Klopp's side, the second in the region of £66 million, though the Premier League club refused to up their most recent proposal due to the German club's unwillingness to sell 'at any price'.

Keita remains a target for Liverpool though claims of a third bid to be tabled by the Mersyside club are false , and any deal taking the Guinea international to Anfield will have to wait until next summer when the midfielder's £48m release clause comes into play.

Leipzig boss Hasenhuttl has all but confirmed that the Reds' interest is over, claiming Keita will certainly remain in Germany ahead of the new season, and has stressed the midfielder's importance as the club prepares for their debut Champions League campaign.

"The chance [of Keita leaving] is null," the manager said. "It's 100% clear that Naby Keita will play this year in Leipzig.

"At the beginning of the transfer period that we said we would start with the same team and of the players we had last year no-one will go.

"For us, everyone can see how important Naby is for our game. It's 100% sure that he will be with RB Leipzig in the Champions League."

Leipzig's excellence in the Bundesliga last season was aided by the brilliance of Keita, who scored eight goals and assisted seven as the top-tier newcomers stormed to a second-place league finish behind behemoths Bayern Munich.

And Keita's emergence of one of the most sought after players in European football comes as no surprise to his manager, who is looking forward to another "fantastic" season with the midfielder in his ranks.

"When you play such a famous season as last year it is normal players get interest, that other clubs are watching us is normal," he said.

"I said for all the players it is very important to stay together as it's the first time we play Champions League and that is a new situation for every one of us.

"He is more focused on us and has more fun now than last year. He knows this season it will be fantastic for us."

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