Naby Keita will bid farewell to Liverpool this summer after a five-year stay at Anfield that saw him win the Champions League, FIFA Club World Cup, Premier League, Carabao Cup, Emirates FA Cup and FA Community Shield.
The midfielder arrived on Merseyside ahead of 2018-19, with the club having agreed a deal with RB Leipzig for his transfer the previous summer.
He made 33 appearances during a debut season in which the Reds racked up 97 points in the league and that concluded with European Cup glory as Tottenham Hotspur were beaten 2-0 in Madrid.
Keita was sadly denied a role in the final at Estadio Metropolitano after picking up an injury in the last-four first leg against FC Barcelona at Camp Nou.
But the Guinea international was a key figure six months later when Jürgen Klopp’s side made history by becoming the first Liverpool team to be crowned world champions.
Keita scored the opener as Monterrey were defeated in the FIFA Club World Cup semi-final and he then played 100 minutes of a final that saw the Reds overcome Flamengo thanks to Roberto Firmino’s extra-time winner.
Later that season, Keita rattled in a stunning strike on an unforgettable evening at Anfield when Klopp’s men celebrated their long-awaited collection of the Premier League trophy by recording a 5-3 win over Chelsea.
Indeed, those efforts versus Monterrey and Chelsea typified the kind of goal Keita showcased a penchant for scoring during his time with the club: important and/or spectacular.
As Klopp put it ahead of his Anfield farewell: “Go back and look at big, big games – the goals he scored, the games he played and the football he could play in his good moments.”
For instance, Keita also netted the first goal on other major occasions: a Champions League quarter-final victory over FC Porto, a vital group-stage finale success against his former club Salzburg and the historic 5-0 win at Old Trafford.
That strike versus Manchester United quickly followed sublime volleys against Crystal Palace and Atletico Madrid during a 2021-22 campaign that was, in terms of appearances, Keita’s most productive for Liverpool.
He played 40 times across all competitions as the Reds’ bid for a quadruple fell agonisingly short.
Keita started the Carabao Cup and Emirates FA Cup finals that both ended with Chelsea being vanquished on penalties at Wembley and came off the bench in the Champions League final loss to Real Madrid.
Injuries restricted Keita to 13 appearances in his fifth and last season with Liverpool but he leaves having won 91 and lost just 20 of his 129 matches for the club – a win percentage of 70.5 per cent.
Everyone at Liverpool FC thanks Naby for his contribution to a hugely successful period in the club’s history and wishes him the best of luck in the future.