New Liverpool signing Naby Keita has revealed that he snubbed approaches from European giants Barcelona and Bayern Munich in order to work with Jurgen Klopp at Anfield.
The Guinean midfielder finally completed his long-awaited move from RB Leipzig to Liverpool this summer, with Jurgen Klopp having tried, and failed, to take him to Anfield 12 months ago.
Liverpool agreed to pay his £48 million release clause, as well as a premium to ensure the deal would be completed, with the 23-year-old completing the switch to the Premier League on 1st July.
He has now revealed that it was his conversations with Reds boss Jurgen Klopp, and his former RB Salzburg teammate Sadio Mane, that convinced him to pick Anfield over the Nou Camp or the Allianz Arena:
“It’s true to say that there were other teams involved like the ones you mentioned (Barcelona and Bayern Munich),” Keita said in quotes carried by the Guardian.
“But a big part of my decision was the role of the coach.
“We had good conversations. The words he spoke to me about this project really convinced me. I could see how the club was developing and I spoke at length with Sadio [Mane].
“Sadio is like a brother to me. We had nine months together at Salzburg and built up a good rapport. We have been great friends since that time. He told me what a great club this was and how the team was progressing and had great potential.”
Aside from Keita, Liverpool have also signed Brazilian midfielder Fabinho, Swiss winger Xherdan Shaqiri, and splashed out a world record fee to bring in goalkeeper Alisson.