Despite RB Leipzig reportedly contacting Liverpool to insist midfielder Naby Keita is not for sale, the Reds are said to have made a £57 million bid.
Widespread reports on Thursday morning claimed the Bundesliga side had reiterated their stance that Keita won’t be leaving the Red Bull Arena this summer.
Beyond this, it was suggested that Keita would be required to submit a transfer request for the Reds to have any chance of securing a deal.
This would have seen the 22-year-old forfeit loyalty bonuses in his current contract.
But according to German publication BILD, Liverpool have made an offer worth £57 million for the Guinean, though this was rejected by Leipzig.
The Reds are likely to be preparing an improved offer for the midfielder, who is Jurgen Klopp‘s priority target this summer.
Keita is believed to be eager to join Liverpool ahead of 2017/18, having previously shunned negotiations over a new contract with Leipzig.
If the Anfield club made their bid after they were told Keita is off limits, this may prove to be a balance-shifting development.
That Liverpool are seemingly confident of signing the No. 8 this summer, despite Leipzig sporting director Ralf Rangnick remaining adamant he will stay, may be due to private assurances.
This is Anfield’s Chris Williams, who has liaised with sources within the German side, relayed that a deal is seen as a “formality” within some quarters at Leipzig.
Klopp is said to have earmarked no alternatives to Keita, with the Reds manager determined to get the deal across the line.