‘Probably’ - Naby Keita Liverpool ‘leaving date’ predicted unless he learns one key attribute
Naby Keita is out of contract at Liverpool in 2023 and has been tipped to depart if he cannot improve his consistency levels.
Naby Keita will leave Liverpool on a free transfer next summer if he fails to produce ‘the form that he’s capable of’ on a regular basis.
That’s the verdict of Danny Murphy as Keita enters the final year of his deal.
The midfielder was signed for a fee of £52.75 million from RB Leipzig in the summer of 2018.
And despite winning every trophy possible at Anfield, he’s still to convince sections of supporters.
Injuries and inconsistency, at times, mean that Keita has some detractors among Kopites.
The Guinea international sees his contract expire in the summer of 2023 and there’s debate whether he should be given fresh terms.
Murphy agrees that Keita’s future is a ‘conundrum’ despite Jurgen Klopp being an admirer.
But if Keita doesn’t find perform as he can over sustained periods, he may depart for absolutely nothing in 12 months’ time.
What’s been said
Speaking to BeMyBet, ex-Reds midfielder and pundit Murphy said: “Yeah, it’s a bit of a conundrum that one."
“I think he’s (Naby Keita) probably the signing that hasn’t exceeded expectations. He’s been a little bit underwhelming.
“He’s had some terrific games and he’s shown some good quality. He understands the role, or he’s understanding the role more and more, in Klopp’s side and he’s played him in some big games.
“I think Jurgen Klopp trusts Naby Keita and believes there's more to come from him - I don't think Keita will be leaving
“I know there are some supporters that would be happy to move him on and bring somebody else in. But I think that the problem they would have at the moment, is that they wouldn’t recoup the money that they spent on him.
“This is a big season for Naby Keita - if he's not productive and consistent, I think Liverpool will let him go next season
“I think this (2022-23) is a big season for him. I think this has to be his most productive and most consistent season as a Liverpool player.
“I think if we are talking this time next year and he’s still been a little bit in and out, not really produced the form that he’s capable of, then I think he probably will move on.
“But I think Klopp believes in him. I think he wants him to do well. As long as he stays fit, I think we’ll see him play more and more this season.”
In total, Keita has made 116 appearances during his four seasons at Anfield.
The 27-year-old has recorded 11 goals and six assists during that period.
Last season, Keita totalled 40 outings as Liverpool claimed the FA Cup and Carabao Cup, as well as narrowly missing out on Premier League and Champions League glory.
He came off the bench in the 1-0 European Cup final loss to Real Madrid in Paris.