Naby Keita has only been part of Jurgen Klopp’s actual squad for a year but some Liverpool fans are already having their doubts after the central midfielder was sent back to England for medical assessment following his nation’s 2-0 victory over Burundi.
It is expected that Keita will return to Egypt to continue in Guinea’s quest for Africa Cup of Nations glory. The 24-year-old had been short of match fitness going into the tournament after sustaining a serious groin injury in Liverpool’s first-leg Champions League defeat at Barcelona. That injury had kept him out of the remainder of the season.
The dynamic midfielder appeared in 38 matches for The Reds in all competitions – with only 16 of them being starts in the Premier League. Liverpool agreed to sign the Guinea international back in August 2017 by meeting his £48m release clause, though he would not leave RB Leipzig for Anfield until the following summer.
Keita could only manage 70 minutes against Burundi as their head coach withdrew him after multiple heavy tackles. It casts a doubt over whether the midfielder will be fit enough for the start of the 2019/20 campaign as Liverpool aim to go one better by winning the Premier League this season – it has resulted in Liverpool fans brandishing him the next Daniel Sturridge, who himself had huge injury troubles at the club.
You can read the thoughts of some Liverpool supporters below:
This is beginning to feel like Sturridge part 2
— JayKeeley (@doomedparade) July 1, 2019
Another Daniel Sturridge type of a player
— henry (@Henrysiya) July 1, 2019
— Mo Salah Facts (@MoSalahFacts) July 1, 2019
— We’ve won it #6Times ????????6️⃣???????? (@will_roddersLFC) July 1, 2019
Keita was and still could be so good for us next season but injuries are making me doubt whether we’ll see the best of him ffs
— Harry (@HS_10Ftbol) July 1, 2019
Naby Keita is very injury prone man
— Ian ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ (@Klopps_RedArmy) July 2, 2019
Naby already starting out like another Sturridge except without the killer first 18 months.
— 6EuropeanPups (@PleasantPups) July 2, 2019
10x more injury prone?
Apps this season
Naby has played at least 32 times in each of the last 5 seasons, mostly without any European football
No need the throw our own player under a bus, for his bad luck, just to make a point about Fekir
— Dan LFC (@Dan19LFC) July 2, 2019
Keita should never have played that is true. The player should have made himself unavailable due to injury.
— Joecol (@joecol) July 2, 2019