Liverpool agree deal to sign Naby Keïta . . . next summer

The 22-year-old had a medical in Wilmslow on Monday ahead of club record transfer

 RB Leipzig’s Naby Keita will be a Liverpool player next season. Photograph: Reuters

RB Leipzig’s Naby Keita will be a Liverpool player next season. Photograph: Reuters

 

Liverpool have agreed a club record deal to sign Naby Keïta from RB Leipzig next summer and are also interested in prising Thomas Lemar from Monaco before the transfer deadline on Thursday.

Keïta, Jürgen Klopp’s prime midfield target for this summer, underwent a medical in England on Monday after Liverpool finally reached agreement with Leipzig over the terms of his transfer. Liverpool are to activate the £48m release clause in the midfielder’s contract – a clause that comes into effect at the end of this season – and will pay a premium to secure the deal now.

Barcelona have been among the rival clubs linked with the Guinea international and Liverpool have moved to ensure Klopp will get his man. Leipzig have refused to consider selling Keïta in this window but have accepted a deal that will allow them to retain the player for their debut Champions League season while earning more than his eventual release clause.

The 22-year-old, who had a medical in Wilmslow on Monday and is expected to finalise the move at Melwood, will officially become a Liverpool player on July 1st 2018.

Liverpool are keen to add Lemar to their squad in this window, although they are yet to make a bid for the 21-year-old. Arsenal have been long-term admirers of the France international but have been informed by Monaco that he is not for sale.

That stance may remain unchanged in the face of Liverpool’s interest but the club are expected to test Monaco’s resolve with a club-record offer worth around £60m, with the possibility of Divock Origi heading the other way.

Guardian services

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