RB Leipzig chief Ralf Rangnick has claimed Naby Keita has had his head turned by “a whole village in Guinea” with Liverpool continuing their pursuit.
The Reds have seen bids of £58million and £66million rejected by the Bundesliga outfit, but reports on Wednesday suggested they are ready to accept a third offer from Liverpool – reported to be a club record £74million.
And with the player also keen on making the move to Anfield this summer, it seems Leipzig face a difficult task in keeping the player ahead of the 2017/18 season.
Now Leipzig sporting director Rangnick believes the 22-year-old Guinea international is being poorly advised and insists too many outside people are offering their thoughts on his future.
Rangnick said: “There should be someone who points them into the right direction.
“The boys themselves are not the problem here. It is their surroundings.
“A whole village in Guinea or somebody from their entourage tells the players why they must do something right away. I can’t blame the players.”
Keita hit the headlines this week after his poor challenge on a Leipzig teammate ended a training session early.
German newspaper Bild claims that Keita’s midfield partner Diego Demme fell to the floor ‘screaming’ following the challenge that forced Hasenhüttl to abandon the session.
Demme was reportedly seen hobbling off with a bandage on his knee and Hasenhüttl demanded that Keita apologised to his team-mate – which he is understood to have done.
Leipzig released a short comment following the incident: “Let off for Diego #Demme. He suffered a bruised knee from a tackle in training, but his meniscus & ligaments are fine. Get well soon, Diego!”
— justgroovy (@justgroovy20th) July 24, 2017
Footage from the aftermath of the tackle in Austria shows worried players crowding around Demme while he receives medical attention.
Bild speculated in the report that the tackle could have been born out of frustration at the lack of movement on a potential move to Liverpool.