Naby Keita Says He Knows 'How to Play Against' Bayern Munich Ahead of UCL Clash

Gill Clark@@gillclarkyFeatured Columnist IIFebruary 17, 2019

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - JANUARY 19: Naby Keita of Liverpool during the Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Crystal Palace at Anfield on January 19, 2019 in Liverpool, United Kingdom. (Photo by James Baylis - AMA/Getty Images)
James Baylis - AMA/Getty Images

Liverpool midfielder Naby Keita says he knows "how to play" against Bayern Munich ahead of the two teams' UEFA Champions League clash at Anfield on Tuesday.

Keita has faced the German giants previously with former club RB Leipzig and says the experience will help the Reds, per Sport Bild (h/t Ian Doyle at the Liverpool Echo):

"I'm not the only expert in this regard - in Xherdan Shaqiri we even have an ex-Bayern player. And of course our coach Jurgen Klopp knows all about them.

"But yes, I know about Bayern's strengths and how to play against them. I moved to Liverpool to win trophies. In the championship we are well in the race, and we have a chance in the Champions League."

Keita has played Bayern five times but has a poor record against the Bundesliga side:

The 24-year-old has endured a slow start to his Liverpool career after joining for a fee of £48 million in 2018, per Phil McNulty of BBC Sport.

However, he's started five of Liverpool's last six games in all competitions and will be hoping to keep his place in the side for Tuesday's match.

Keita was particularly impressive in Liverpool's last outing, a 3-0 Premier League win over Bournemouth at Anfield.

James Pearce at the Liverpool Echo offered his view on his performance:  

Team-mate Sadio Mane has said the Reds are yet to see the best of the Guinean midfielder, per James Carroll at the club's official website.

“I just told him today in training, 'I know your qualities and for sure, everyone is waiting for more from you because that’s normal, it’s a big club and you are doing your best – but you can do more,'" he said.

Liverpool will need Keita to continue his recent improvements against Bayern, particularly as the Reds will be without some key defenders for the first leg.

Virgil van Dijk has been ruled out through suspension, while Joe Gomez is sidelined after undergoing surgery on a fractured leg.

Jurgen Klopp has also been preparing for the match with the expectation Dejan Lovren will not be fit either, per Chris Shaw at Liverpool's official website.

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