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23rd Apr 2018

There’s a good reason why Liverpool will be hoping RB Leipzig’s winless run continues

They could save a lot of money

Darragh Murphy

Liverpool will have a keen eye on RB Leipzig’s three remaining Bundesliga fixtures.

The fee that Liverpool will end up paying for Leipzig star Naby Keita will be entirely dependent on where the side finishes in the table.

A deal had been agreed between the clubs last summer which would see Keita move to Anfield this July but the Reds could end up saving as much as £11 million if Leipzig’s winless run continues.

Defeat to Hoffenheim on Saturday has left Leipzig without a league win in April, meaning they are now just one point above seventh-placed Eintracht Frankfurt and in serious danger of missing out on European football next season.

Paul Joyce of The Times notes that Liverpool will only have to pay about £48 million for the Guinean midfielder if Leipzig finish seventh or below, while the fee will rise to £52.75 million if the team qualifies for the Europa League.

An unlikely finish in the Champions League places will see the Merseyside club part ways with £59 million.

There had been talk of the move for Keita being fast-tracked to January but Leipzig refused to part ways with the 23-year-old as they hoped to bolster their European qualification chances.

While the eventual pricetag remains to be seen, one thing is for sure and that’s that Keita is heading for Anfield and Liverpool legend Phil Thompson believes the arrival of Keita will prove to be the missing ingredient for the Reds.

“They’ve already strengthened with the signing of Keita from Leipzig. I think he is absolutely terrific,” Thompson recently told Sky Sports.

“I was watching him just last week in the Europa League and my goodness, this guy will probably give us what we’ve lacked.

“In that three behind the front three – he gives you goals, he gives you assists, he gives you energy and he’s a nasty little character.

“There is only James Milner who will really put his foot in and I think this guy could be a real sensation in the Premier League.”