REUTERS - Liverpool have confirmed they have agreed a club record deal with German club RB Leipzig for the transfer of midfielder Naby Keita, who will move to Anfield at the start of next season.
The 22-year-old Guinea international was identified as a priority signing by Liverpool manager Juergen Klopp, but Leipzig, who are in the Champions League this season, were unwilling to let him leave in the current transfer window.
Keita has a 48 million pound ($62.14 million) release clause in his Leipzig contract that comes into effect next season and Liverpool agreed to pay an undisclosed premium on that amount to secure his services in advance.
“I am delighted that an agreement has been reached which will allow me to join Liverpool Football Club next summer, when I will become part of a project that excites me greatly,” Keita told Liverpool’s website. (www.liverpoolfc.com)
The Guinean, who scored eight goals in 31 Bundesliga appearances for Leipzig last season and helped guide them to a second-place finish, added that he would be committed to the German club until he officially joins Liverpool in July 2018.
“Having my future resolved means I can now focus on helping RBL achieve great things this season. Until I join my new club, next summer, I will remain an interested supporter from a distance,” he said.
($1 = 0.7725 pounds)
Reporting by Simon Jennings in Bengaluru; Editing by John O'Brien