Liverpool are reportedly considering whether to approach RB Leipzig with a third bid for midfielder Naby Keita, after their £66 million offer was rejected.
The Bundesliga side confirmed that they had turned down the Reds’ latest bid on Wednesday, claiming that Keita is not for sale at any price.
However, with the 22-year-old eager to make the move to Merseyside this summer, Liverpool still have faint hopes of securing a deal.
According to the Liverpool Echo, the Reds are debating whether to return with an improved offer for Keita, with this set to be worth over £70 million.
It is said that Leipzig are holding firm in their stance, however, leaving Liverpool required to call their bluff.
James Pearce claims that “even the player submitting an official transfer request appears unlikely to break the deadlock.”
If the club opt against making another move for Keita this summer, they will “have to look at alternative options,” as Jurgen Klopp seeks to bolster his midfield ranks.
Liverpool are planning to “consider their options over the next few days,” with Klopp and his side currently away on a pre-season tour of Hong Kong, remaining there for the rest of the week.
The pursuit of Keita has presented a major power play between three parties: Liverpool, Leipzig and the player himself.
However, while Sadio Mane, who shares a representative with the Guinean, forced through a move from Leipzig’s sister-club Red Bull Salzburg in 2014, Keita is not expected to follow suit.
The midfielder has joined Leipzig’s pre-season preparations, and was part of the side that beat ZFC Meuselwitz 6-0 on Tuesday.
Lazio’s Sergej Milinkovic-Savic was mooted as an option earlier in the summer, but has fallen off the radar.