By Wayne Veysey

14th Jan, 2023 | 1:08pm

Sources: Liverpool to let Naby Keita go

Liverpool have pulled the plug on contract talks with Naby Keita and will let him go despite his impressive recent return to the team, sources have told Football Insider.

The midfielder, 27, has impressed in three cameo Premier League appearances as a substitute since returning from a hamstring injury that sidelined him for the first half of the season.

Liverpool had been reluctant to lose Keita for nothing in the summer and held talks on an extension to his current deal.

But those negotiations have failed to secure an agreement, and the Guinea international will now leave on a free transfer in the summer.

He could leave this month but Jurgen Klopp will not allow that as he is already short of midfield options and Keita remains part of his first-team plans.

As Football Insider revealed in September, Klopp remains a big admirer of a player he regularly selects when fit.

But the club wanted Keita to take a pay cut to stay, largely due to his poor availability record and the series of injuries that have plagued his Anfield career.

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Football Insider injury expert Ben Dinnery revealed that Keita “has only played 26% of the league minutes available since he came to the club”.

As a result, the midfielder’s transfer value has now diminished hugely since he signed for £52.75million from RB Leipzig in the summer of 2018.

During his four-and-a-half seasons at Anfield, Keita has made 122 appearances, scoring 11 goals and supplying seven assists.

The midfielder has been unable to match his regular goal contributions at former clubs Leipzig and RB Salzburg.

In other news, Liverpool work on late-window box-office signing, loan-to-buy discussed