Naby Keita has emerged as a shock target for Atletico Madrid, as Diego Simeone plots a summer move for the Liverpool midfielder.
According to Fichajes, Diego Simeone is determined to bolster his midfield options in the summer amid the uncertainty surrounding the future of his key midfielders. One of the players identified as the desired target for the Atletico Madrid coach is Liverpool star Naby Keita.
The Liverpool midfielder hasn’t enjoyed a particularly successful spell at Anfield, since joining from RB Leipzig a few summers ago. His career with the Premier League giants has been marred by injuries, with the midfielder notching up only 76 appearances in all competitions.
The ongoing 2020/21 campaign has been arguably the worst one for Keita, as he has featured in only ten league games – only seven of which were starts. The 26-year-old missed a chunk of the campaign with an ankle injury, but perhaps most importantly, he has fallen behind the likes of Thiago, Jordan Henderson and even Curtis Jones in the pecking order.
Diego Simeone is aware of this situation, and is willing to offer Keita a more secured platform to showcase his ability at the highest level of football.
It is no secret that Atletico are bracing themselves for a potential mass exodus in the midfield department. One of the star players in Saul is already a target for FC Barcelona while Lucas Torreira’s loan deal is unlikely to be extended, leaving Simeone devoid of options in the middle of the park.
This is where someone like Naby Keita could be useful for Atleti, as much like Saul, the Liverpool midfielder is blessed with an ideal mix of aggression and technical prowess. He should, therefore, thrive at Wanda Metropolitano, as Atletico Madrid’s style of play is quite similar to that of RB Leipzig or RB Salzburg, where he was so successful.
As for Liverpool, the potential departure of Keita could put them in a difficult situation given the fact that they are set to lose Georginio Wijnaldum. The Dutchman’s current contract at Anfield expires at the end of the season, allowing him to leave the club for free.
The Reds have been linked with a bunch of potential replacement options including Borussia Monchengladbach midfielder Denis Zakaria, although they could face stiff competition from Premier League rivals Arsenal and Manchester United this summer.