Liverpool are planning a third bid of £75m, with £40m to be paid up front, for RB Leipzig’s Naby Keita, in what is likely to be a final offer.
The Merseyside club however feel that could finally be enough to persuade Leipzig, who have so far been completely unmoving in their stance that the player is not for sale.
German sources close to the negotiations feel it has become almost a matter of principle to keep Keita, and have been steadfast in their attitude, but a bid of that size could prove extremely persuasive.
There is an extra edge to the situation given that the 22-year-old Guinean midfielder has a clause in his contract meaning he can leave for £48m next summer, so the size of such an offer from Liverpool – a 56 per cent mark-up on a player they are almost certain to eventually lose – could well convince them to a deal.
The Merseyside club have previously had bids of £57.3m and £66m rejected for the player, who greatly desires a move to Anfield, but has so far just gone about his business with Leipzig and not in any way agitated for a move.
Leipzig owner Dietrich Mateschitz said to Sport Bild on Wednesday that it was not a matter of finance.
“We don’t sell any of our players just to get money. Lately we got a €75m offer for Naby Keita. No way!
“He has a contract and he will fulfil 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.”
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