Liverpool have had an extraordinary offer of £70 million for Naby Keita rejected by Red Bull Leipzig.
The Bundesliga side have stated throughout the summer they are unwilling to sell their midfielder – and they are not interested in negotiating with the Merseysiders. Now the latest approach, almost doubling Liverpool’s current club-record deal of £36 million for Mohamed Salah, has been rebuffed.
Leipzig’s stance has never changed and the refusal to accept such an offer further demonstrates Jurgen Klopp’s difficulty securing his prime summer target.
Speaking to German media today, Leipzig owner Dietrich Mateschitz reiterated the view Liverpool are wasting their time trying to sign Keita this summer.
“We don’t sell any of our players just to get money,” he told Bild.
“Lately we got a €75m 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.”
Mateschitz’s comment contradicts some claims, none of which have ever been verified in either Germany or England, that there was a difference of opinion between Leipzig’s executive team and sporting director on whether to sell Keita.
The public statements from Leipzig have been consistent ever since Liverpool made their first approach and the rejection of such a huge offer will leave Klopp mulling his options.
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 No 1 target, but admitted he might eventually have no choice if there was no possibility of securing a deal.
However, Klopp’s comments made it clear that would be a last resort as he only wanted the right players, not just someone who will appease those clamouring for more action in the transfer market.
This story has been reproduced from today's media. It does not necessarily represent the position of Liverpool Football Club.