Liverpool could save £11m on Naby Keita's transfer fee this season

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Jurgen Klopp had three main transfer targets last summer.

One of them has gone on to win the PFA Player of the Year, breaking several goalscoring records in the process. Klopp had to wait until January to sign the second one but, since his £75 million arrival, he’s been superb. And the third will arrive next summer.

Of course, we’re talking about Mohamed Salah, Virgil van Dijk and Naby Keita.

The £37 million spent on Salah looks an absolute bargain with the Egyptian already notching 41 goals in all competitions.

Van Dijk arrived six months later than planned - after Liverpool were reported to the Premier League for their illegal approach - but the Dutchman has seemingly single-handedly addressed the side’s defensive issues.

And if Keita has a similar impact, Liverpool will have a very strong spine next season.

They were so desperate to sign the RB Leipzig midfielder that they agreed a deal 12 months in advance of his arrival.


Keita was set to have a £48 million release clause coming into play in the summer of 2018 and Liverpool were willing to pay a premium on top of that in order to beat the competition.

But it’s been revealed that they might not have to pay a premium at all.

Several reports, including from The Times and Sky Sports, suggest that Liverpool could actually save themselves £11 million from the Keita deal.

If the German side were to qualify for next season’s Champions League, the Reds would have to shell out £59 million.

Napoli v RB Leipzig - UEFA Europa League

However, if they only qualify for the Europa League, the fee will drop down to £52.75 million.

But, following their 5-2 defeat to Hoffenheim at the weekend, there’s a real danger of Leipzig not qualifying for any European competition at all.


They’re currently sixth but are just one point clear of Eintracht in seventh. If they do finish seventh or below, Liverpool will have to pay just £48 million for Keita.

Incidentally, Leipzig are four points off Bayer Leverkusen, who occupy the final Champions League qualifying spot.

So, Liverpool fans will be hoping Leipzig slip up in their remaining three fixtures and finish seventh or lower to save a cool £11 million on Keita.

In their remaining fixtures, they face two relegation-threatened sides in Mainz and Wolfsburg, before they travel to ninth-placed Hertha Berlin on the final day of the season.

One thing is for sure, Keita for £48 million would be seen an absolute bargain.

Premier League

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