Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp insists that he was not surprised by the level of Naby Keita’s performance on his competitive debut for the club.
Filed: Sunday, August 12, 2018 at 22:43 UK
Last Updated: Sunday, August 12, 2018 at 22:43 UK
The midfielder drew plaudits from fans and pundits alike with his display during the 4-0 triumph over West Ham United at Anfield this evening, notably playing a big role in Mohamed Salah‘s opening goal.
Klopp was eager to highlight the performances of other players too, but acknowledged that Keita has settled quickly into life at the club following his move from RB Leipzig.
“It was a good performance, of course. In just six weeks in, I don’t make the difference between a new player and another player. For me, it’s exactly the similar importance to me that Milly (James Milner) and Gini [Wijnaldum] are ready to make the next stage in their development as well,” Klopp told reporters.
“Naby is in because he is a really good footballer, and I’ve said from the beginning that he has obviously settled really quickly. It is a similar style of play, he plays a similar position that he was in at Leipzig. He can play different positions obviously but I think number eight is his best at the moment. So that’s all cool.
“He has a lot of help from the players around him today, with Sadio [Mane] working really hard, and the same with Gini and Milly and Robbo (Andy Robertson) in this case. I’m pleased absolutely but that’s what we expected.”
Keita initially agreed to join Liverpool prior to the 2017-18 season, but was forced to wait until this summer to complete the deal.
Klopp: ‘I could not wish for better start’