Keita reveals what Klopp kept telling him during Liverpool injury struggles

Naby Keita has spoken out about how much Jurgen Klopp supported him during his injury troubles during his time with Liverpool.

The Guinea midfielder left Anfield last month after five years at the club, signing for Werder Bremen earlier this month.

The 28-year-old’s time on Merseyside was unfortunately littered with a series of injury problems, enduring no fewer than 21 separate spells on the sidelines (Transfermarkt), but he’s revealed how supportive the manager had been throughout those difficult moments.

Speaking to SportBILD (via Sport Witness), Keita said of Klopp: “He is a very good coach and a really good person. Whenever I was injured, he took care of me. He kept telling me, ‘You are strong, never give up!’ That helped me.

“Even though things didn’t go so well for me in Liverpool because of my injuries, I’m very grateful to him.”

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Having cost the Reds £52.75m upon joining them in 2018 (Sky Sports), a club-record fee at the time (BBC Sport), Keita naturally came to Anfield with plenty of expectation heaped upon him.

His continued injury troubles prevented him from ever truly becoming part of the furniture on Merseyside, although he still came up with some pivotal goals for Liverpool and produced a few standout performances among his 129 games in red (Transfermarkt).

A goalscoring burst in April 2019 showed how good he could be when playing consistently and performing to his best, while his strike against Monterrey in the Club World Cup semi-final later that year went a long way towards Klopp’s team ultimately winning the trophy for the first time.

As for the manager, Keita’s comments highlight just how classy an individual the German is, offering words of support to players at low points when such encouragement is very much needed, when other coaches mightn’t have shown the same compassion in a similar scenario.

We’re very lucky to have someone like Jurgen in charge who’s not just an outstanding coach but, as the Guinean’s anecdote shows, a wonderful person as well. It’s no wonder players would run through a brick wall for a boss like him.

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