Liverpool have officially unveiled midfielder Naby Keita after a deal was agreed for him to move to Anfield this summer. Reds fans have had to wait a year to see Keita in Liverpool colours and now the new man has been handed the No.8 shirt at Anfield by club legend, Steven Gerrard.
Keita says he will be inspired by wearing Steven Gerrard’s iconic No.8 shirt at Liverpool, the Guinea midfielder has spoken about the “incredible” moment when he was presented with the jersey by the Kop legend at Melwood.
Keita, who will officially complete his £52.75million move from RB Leipzig on July 1, becomes the first player to wear No.8 since Gerrard left the club in 2015. “It was an incredible day for me,” Keita told Liverpoolfc.com, “He gave me the No.8 jersey. When it happened, it was a surprise and I didn’t expect it.
“When he came in, I looked and him and said ‘wow’ because he is a legend. He is somebody who always showed respect, who gave his all on the pitch, somebody who is loved here.“If somebody like that gives you his shirt number, it’s not to play around with, it is to try and do as much as he did – that’s my motivation.”
Keita will begin pre-season training with Liverpool on Monday at Melwood, joining the rest of the players who are not on international duty.
The former-RB Leipzig man added: “When you see how they performed last season it makes me want to do the same and to be a part of this team. I would like to be able to achieve a similar kind of season with them next season – but even better.
“I chose Liverpool because it is a team I watched often – and I also spoke a lot about it with Sadio [Mane]. He told me a lot about the team and the club. I also spoke with the coach, who told me about the project for the team and that motivated me to be here.”
Liverpool fans, will Naby Keita show why Klopp was right to invest in him and fulfill his potential at Anfield? Let us know your thoughts by commenting below. You can tweet us at @AllOutFootball_ using the hashtag #AOF.