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Klopp: Keita is a key part of our future

As we tick past the three-month mark of the current season, it is fair to say things are progressing in a positive direction for the Reds.

 

Currently going toe to toe with Man City at the top of the league and with Champions League qualification still in our hands, there is plenty to play for and look forward to. A quick look at football-bookmakers.com shows the Reds as clear second favourites behind City after an impressive unbeaten start through 14 games.

 

However, another encouraging sign is that there is still another level or two that this team can reach, and that is no more evident than in some of the summer signings.

 

While Alisson and Xherdan Shaqiri clearly get pass marks, it has been the performances of Fabinho and especially Naby Keita which has raised some question marks.

 

The signing of the Guinea international in August 2017 sparked a great deal of excitement among the fanbase.

 

This was largely because the midfield was looming as a large area of concern and looking for a strong central figure after the departure of Steven Gerrard.

 

His all-action style seemed to tick all the boxes and on the face of things, the arrival of Keita who spent another year in the Bundesliga with RB Leipzig last season to gain more senior experience would fit seamlessly into the starting lineup.

 

However, it has been anything but the case and Keita has largely been on the periphery due to a series of frustrating injuries, which has prevented the 23-year-old from showing his worth.

 

In 11 appearances for the club, (which has included six starts), Keita is yet to register a goal or assist.

 

Speaking ahead of the crunch Champions League encounter with Paris Saint Germain on Wednesday evening, Sky Sports reported the verdict of Klopp on his midfield star

 

"His start was really good and then average. That's how it is," Klopp said. "Naby can improve and learn the language but it's a long-term project.

 

Klopp then took a moment to explain what he meant by the word 'average.'

 

"Naby has not been average since he has been here. The situation after he got injured was average because he had to get fit again but the start was brilliant.

 

keita3_600.jpg

 

In not so many words, the manager stated that Keita may have to bide his time in his quest to get regular starting minutes.

 

"He is now really fit. He has looked sharp in training but with a club like us, sometimes you have to wait a bit longer for the moment and if you get the moment, you have to be ready.

 

"That is how it is. He is an outstanding player and I am really happy to have him."

 

There is a well-known saying that a player who has had a stop-start campaign in the first half of the campaign can be like a 'new signing' once the new year comes around.

 

With Klopp giving no indication that he will be delving into the transfer market once January comes around, Keita looks like fitting that description to a tee.

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20 minutes ago, moof said:

Does anybody doubt this lad’s quality?

Yeah, there'll be loads. They did it with both VVD and Alisson, too. Some said Suarez and Salah were too slow and couldn't finish. There's quite a few that will think this guy is utter shit.

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27 minutes ago, Numero Veinticinco said:

Yeah, there'll be loads. They did it with both VVD and Alisson, too. Some said Suarez and Salah were too slow and couldn't finish. There's quite a few that will think this guy is utter shit.

There's a grey area where 'doubting his quality' is concerned, I don't think we have to have two camps (utter shit & amazing).

 

Personally, I'm a little worried about Keita, he's looked lost in his infrequent appearances so far. I think he'll come good eventually but it's easy to see why people might have their doubts at this stage.

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His style is all about rhythm and guile. He’s shown flashes of his brilliance, tonight he was very good against West Ham, Spurs and Palace. His dribbling is fantastic, just needs a moment for it to turn for him. I think he’ll be boss.

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All these issues...he's another...

 

City flying along with the media fawning over every performance all without De Bruyne...probably rightly so.

 

We on the other hand have question marks, Fabinha and Keita to kick on, front 3 not at best just yet to mention but a few...

 

Yet we are only 2 bloody points off them..

 

They showed again last night that they are susceptible at the back, even Hammers created some good chances against them...they have a lot of games coming up against teams that have a go, next six games they have Bournemouth, Everton, Palace at home, then away to Watford, Chelsea, Leicester..if they take 18pts from those I will be impressed...

 

Its the hope that kills me, but Klopps signings on the whole have been very good and I'm confident Keita will flourish as will Fabinha..

 

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