Monday 18 February 2019

Keita: Number 8 shirt important

Naby Keita
Naby Keita

New Liverpool signing Naby Keita admits being given Steven Gerrard's number eight shirt - which he was presented with by the former Reds captain himself - will motivate him as he starts his Anfield career.

The Guinea international begins pre-season training with the non-World Cup members of Jurgen Klopp's squad on Monday, having waited a year for the opportunity after a deal was agreed with RB Leipzig last summer.

And wearing the number Gerrard had for 11 years at Anfield, famously lifting the Champions League trophy in it in 2005, is a huge honour.

"It is an important number and it carries a lot of history, but more importantly for me this number will give me the motivation to play and to follow in the footsteps of the players who have worn this shirt before," Keita said.

Keita travelled to Liverpool's Melwood training ground last August following the conclusion of a deal with Leipzig and while he was there Gerrard, then the club's under-18s coach, presented him with his shirt.

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