Klopp to be patient with Keita

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp admits that Naby Keita has struggled to adapt to life in the Premier League following his transfer from RB Leipzig.

Keita has not featured for the Reds since their 2-0 Premier League victory at Wolves, who they visit for an FA Cup third-round match on Monday, last month.

However, Klopp insists the midfielder remains an integral part of his squad and is convinced he will eventually be a big hit in England.

Keita has remained on the bench for Liverpool's last three games, with Klopp saying: "That's how it is sometimes. With Naby, everything is fine and I am completely happy. Could he be a bit more confident in the games? Yes.

"Is he exactly the player [he was] in his best time at Leipzig? No, but he's still adapting, that's how it is.

"But everybody saw how brilliant he played in the first part [of the season]. Then a little injury here, a little injury there and it was kind of a little setback. But he is a fantastic player and I'm really happy to have him here."

Klopp is set to make wholesale changes to his side for the trip to Molineux and has already confirmed that Simon Mignolet and Alberto Moreno will start the game.

Joe Gomez and Joel Matip are injured so Klopp has intimated that he may continue with Dejan Lovren and Virgil van Dijk at the heart of his defence.

Liverpool, 7/1 to win the FA Cup this season and 5/6 to claim the Premier League title, can be backed at 10/11 to beat Wolves on Monday.

Mane predicting Keita impact

Sadio Mane is predicting fit-again Liverpool team-mate Naby Keita to "do great things for us" and help the team achieve.

The 26-year-old Senegal international is well aware of Keita's qualities given that he played alongside him at Red Bull Salzburg in 2014 before leaving for Southampton.

Keita left the Austrian outfit for German Bundesliga side RB Leipzig in 2016, before being reunited with Mane at Anfield in the summer when Reds boss Jurgen Klopp paid over £50million for his signature.

The 23-year-old Guinea international has struggled with a hamstring problem so far on Merseyside, but he did return after a month-long absence in last weekend's 2-0 win against Fulham.

And Mane is confident that Keita will now justify the huge transfer fee paid for his services and help fire Liverpool to success.

"I always said, I knew Naby since Red Bull Salzburg because we played together. He is a great player and also young; he still has a lot to learn and improve," Mane told Premier League Productions.

"When he came he surprised everyone but not me, because I know him. I'm sure he will do great things for us. Now he is back with the team and we are happy to have him. I'm looking forward to seeing him helping the team as he can."

Liverpool are 4/1 to win the Premier League this season, while they are priced at 12/1 to go one betetr than in 2017-18 and win the Champions League.

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Klopp: Title expectations are high

Jurgen Klopp has warned that his Liverpool side will have to cope with the view of some that their season will only be a success if they win the Premier League title.

The Reds have not been crowned champions of England since the 1989-90 season and, having played some goal-laden football and reached the Champions League final last term, Klopp is aware of just how much is expected of his team in the coming months.

He told reporters ahead of a Sunday lunchtime clash with Fulham at Anfield: "The season so far-wise, points-wise in the Premier League, has been really successful.

"But it doesn't really feel like that because there are two reasons in comparison with last year – free-flowing football in a few games and Man City and maybe Chelsea and a few others play a very good season as well.

"It feels a bit like this season can only be a success if we become champions this year – in a year our competitors are the champions of last year, the champions of two years ago, a more refreshed Arsenal and a more experienced Tottenham and Manchester United.

"That's a really tough job, but we have no problem with that, we go for everything. We have to build on our situation, we have to get better, to get more confidence out of the season."

Klopp also confirmed that midfield duo Jordan Henderson and Naby Keita are both available for selection for the game against the Cottagers.

Liverpool, who have beaten Fulham 4-0 on both of their last two visits to Merseyside, are 1/9 to take all three points on Sunday and are 8/1 to win 4-0 yet again.

Meanwhile, the Reds are 9/2 to claim the Premier League title this season.

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Klopp taking nothing for granted

Liverpool head coach Jurgen Klopp says his side will have to be 'spot-on' if they are to secure a fourth consecutive victory over Manchester City.

The Reds have already seen off the Citizens three times this year, winning a Premier League clash at Anfield 4-3, before triumphing in both legs of their Champions League quarter-final tie.

However, Klopp is not reading too much into those recent results, as he prepares his players for a league showdown with the reigning champions on Merseyside on Sunday.

He told reporters: "It is a home game against Manchester City and that is a tough one. Last year they were really special and I expect them to be like this again.

"Teams that play like them can lose focus, but it never happened to City last year, so they have all my respect.

"We have to be spot-on and really be our best to keep them away from our goal and create chances. It will be hard work, no problem with that, everybody knows it."

Liverpool can be backed at 31/20 to win the game at Anfield on Sunday, with the draw priced at 13/5, while a final scoreline of 2-2 is available at 11/1.

Meanwhile, Klopp is waiting to see whether Naby Keita will be able to play a part against City, with the midfielder having needed hospital treatment for a back problem after being replaced during the midweek Champions League loss at Napoli.

He added: "He had a back spasm. He's in today, but whether he can do something on the training ground I don’t know.

"We have to see the doctor again and we'll make a decision. Tomorrow we'll have to see. It didn't look to serious, so there is a chance he can play, but we don't know."

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Reds sweat on Keita verdict

Liverpool are waiting to discover the extent of the back injury sustained by midfielder Naby Keita during the 1-0 Champions League defeat at Napoli.

The 23-year-old summer signing had to be replaced just before the 20-minute mark in Naples, and was subsequently taken to a local hospital for checks and tests.

A statement from the Reds confirmed: "Naby Keita was taken to hospital in Naples on Wednesday evening during the first half of the Champions League fixture with Napoli.

"The midfielder started the game at the Stadio San Paolo, but was substituted inside the opening 20 minutes and replaced after alerting the team’s medical staff to back pain.

"He was transferred to a local hospital with the club doctor, where he underwent a number of precautionary health checks to assess his condition."

Meanwhile, Reds head coach Jurgen Klopp, who now has to prepare his players for a Sunday showdown with Premier League champions Manchester City, accepted that his side had not been at their best in Italy.

He added: "It was an interesting looking group before we started and it's still interesting now.

"We want to play better than we did tonight, but even if we don't play brilliantly, we want a result. Tonight we weren't as good as we could be.

"We didn't perform and that's how football works – against a good side in the Champions League, you lose. That's happened and nothing more."

Liverpool are priced at 13/8 to defeat the Citizens at Anfield on Sunday, with the draw available at 13/5, while the Reds are 10/1 to secure a 2-1 victory.

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Keita pleads for patience

Naby Keita is "motivated" to be a success at Liverpool but called for patience as he adapts to the demands of playing in the Premier League.

Reds boss Jurgen Klopp spent £52.75million of his summer transfer budget to bring the 23-year-old into his Anfield squad from German Bundesliga outfit RB Leipzig.

The Guinea international midfielder has featured in all of Liverpool's opening four Premier League matches, but started the recent win at Leicester on the substitutes' bench.

It has been a dream start for the Merseysiders as they sit at the top of the Premier League with a 100 per cent record, but Keita claims it will take time before the Reds' fans see the best of him.

He told Liverpool's club magazine: "I've been told by many people that a lot of overseas players come into the Premier League and they take time to integrate, depending on the circumstances.

"So playing in the Premier League can be difficult, but I am very motivated to play here, not just for myself and my team-mates, but for the club.

"Everybody around me has been very supportive towards me so I am certainly giving everything I can to get settled into the team quickly."

Keita added: "The Premier League is different to other leagues where I have played and everybody knows it is very tough, but I will do my best to beat my own personal records – I'm very motivated."

Keita will hope to be involved on Saturday when Liverpool travel to face Tottenham at Wembley as the Premier League returns.

The Reds, who are 11/4 to win the Premier League this season, are 7/5 to make it five wins on the spin, while Spurs are priced at 19/10 to win and the draw is 9/4.

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Keita stays put until the summer

RB Leipzig have closed the door on midfielder Naby Keita being allowed to join Liverpool during the January transfer window.

The 22-year-old Guinea international has already agreed a deal to move to Anfield next summer, but the Reds were reported to be keen to reach an agreement to push the player's arrival forward to this month.

However, Leipzig, who moved up into second place in the Bundesliga with a 3-1 weekend win over Schalke, have firmly put an end to continued suggestions that Keita might be moving on in the very near future.

Sporting director Ralf Rangnick stated. "We won't allow Liverpool to sign him early. They have shown renewed interest to bring him in during this transfer window.

"As everyone knows, we are not a selling club, therefore it would only have been possible had we reached a mutual agreement involving an exorbitant additional fee. That is not the case."

A tweet from the Bundesliga club put their position even more clearly, reading: "OFFICIAL: Naby Keïta will remain an RB Leipzig player until 30th June 2018. We wish to put the speculation about a January move to Liverpool to bed."

Keita, who scored in the victory against Schalke, joined Leipzig in the summer of 2016 from RB Salzburg and has since scored 11 goals in 45 Bundesliga appearances.

As well as domestic matters, Leipzig are also still involved in the Europa League, where they have been drawn to face Napoli in the last-32 of the competition.

Leipzig can be backed at 25/1 to win the Europa League this season, with Napoli available at 10/1 and Borussia Dortmund 10/1.

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Winning is the Best Way to Start 2018!

RB Leipzig 3-1 Schalke 04

RB Leipzig made sure to start the year with a bang as the Bundesliga returned to regular programming after a month-long winter break.

The Red Bulls, winless in their last four top-flight football games before the match, handed Schalke their first defeat since September to move above their top-four rivals and reclaim the second spot.

Pre-match betting odds were tight between the two, but the Royal Blues fell short after a swashbuckling second half saw Leipzig thrill live betting and pull away for good with a quick-fire double.

Liverpool-bound Naby Keita opened the scoring for the hosts to give them the lead at halftime. Amid speculations that he could leave earlier than planned, the Guinea international put the issues to one side and scored from 25 yards with the help of a huge deflection from Schalke’s Naldo.

Having a penchant for fighting back, the Royal Blues restored parity moments after the restart. Naldo made amends for his blunder earlier and met Daniel Caligiuri’s free-kick to fire an unstoppable header past keeper Peter Gulacsi.

Schalke appeared to be on the ascendancy, but another costly mistake from Naldo allowed Leipzig to regain their lead and win. The 35-year-old lost possession in the 69th minute and the resulting attack paved the way for Bulls’ Timo Werner to blast the ball from close range.

Werner then turned provider two minutes later, setting up Bruma for their third goal and first victory since November.

Earlier on Saturday, Bayern Munich increased their lead at the top after taking down Bayer Leverkusen, 1-3. James Rodriguez scored one and assisted on another as the Bavarians moved 13 points clear off the second-placers.

Hannover also had a sensational win this Week 18 as Niclas Fullkrug bagged a hat-trick to power HSV past Mainz 05, all after the visitors went 2-0 up. Elsewhere, Stuttgart beat Hertha BSC 1-0 to end their four-game skid, while Augsburg piled more misery on relegation-threatened Hamburg.

On the other games, Werder Bremen and Hoffenheim, as well as Frankfurt and Freiburg, shared the spoils in their respective fixtures.

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No January move for Keita

RB Leipzig are adamant that Naby Keita will not be moving to Liverpool this month and intend to keep the Guinea international until the summer.

Jurgen Klopp's side have paid a premium to secure the midfielder's services in July when a £48million buy-out becomes active.

However, it had been reported that, following the sale of Philippe Coutinho to Barcelona for £142million earlier this month, the Reds would attempt to bring the signing forward by six months.

However, RB Leipzig head coach Ralph Hasenhuttl insists Keita will not be heading to Anfield in January, saying: "The situation hasn't changed.

"We have always said that there's no reason to let Keita leave early and that's the way it will be. Keita will play against Schalke this weekend and hopefully he'll play well. That's the only thing I'm interested in." Leipzig are 11/10 to beat Schalke.

Meanwhile, Liverpool are 1/3 to finish in the top four of the Premier League this season and 21/10 to come out on top against Manchester City on Sunday.

Leipzig are currently fifth in the Bundesliga and will be involved in the Europa League in the second half of the campaign after finishing third behind Besiktas and Porto in Champions League Group G. They are 25/1 to win the Europa League this season.

More Bundesliga Action for Football Betting Fans

If you’re looking for quality football games, you can always count on the Bundesliga to deliver!

The top professional league in Germany keeps live betting fans on their toes as every squad in the table are out to play. The fact that Bayern Munich were beaten by Monchengladbach should give people an idea of how competitive this league is.

This coming weekend promises more of the top-quality football we’ve come to love in the Bundesliga.

WEEK 13 SATURDAY:

SC Freiburg vs Hamburger SV

The weekend may start with a tight relegation battle, but don’t simply brush this game off as a snooze fest. Hamburg shocked many with an eye-popping win over Hoffenheim. Meanwhile, Freiburg won a great clash at home versus Hoffenheim. We can expect a thrilling match to happen at Schwarzwald-Stadion.

Bayern Munich vs Hannover 96

Bayern’s faithful supporters were probably shocked by the upset they experienced at the hands of Monchengladbach, so we can be sure to see fired-up plays from the rest of the squad. I think they have a good shot at victory against a struggling Hannover side.

However, the visitors have done extremely well against squads like Schalke and Dortmund. It would not be advisable to simply brush off the visitors, but Bayern should still win. With that being said, Hannover +2.25 @ 2.03 is a tempting punt to make.

Hoffenheim vs RB Leipzig

Hoffenheim have recently fallen off the top due to a string of subpar performances over the past two months. Meanwhile, Leipzig are closing the gap at the top after winning seven points in their last three games.

Leipzig look like heavy favourites to win this match, especially if we consider the fact that the 1899 lost 3-0 to Hamburg last time out. This game is theirs to lose, so punters should not hesitate to choose Leipzig’s -0.50 @ 2.29.

Werder Bremen vs VfB Stuttgart

The Red Bulls may have cut Werder Bremen’s fun short, but their 4-0 win over Hoffenheim should give them all the confidence they need to put up a fight against Stuttgart. The visitors have only drawn with Hannover, but they won three of their last five matches.

Bayer Leverkusen vs Borussia Dortmund

Dortmund’s aspirations for the title might as well end here if they don’t manage to win against Bayer Leverkusen this weekend. The BVB have not won a Bundesliga game in so long, but their high-scoring draw with Schalke gives supporters hope.

Meanwhile, Bayer Leverkusen are on an impressive unbeaten streak, putting their confidence on the highest level. I don’t think they will be beaten at home, but Dortmund should be able to turn this into another draw. Punters should not hesitate to consider punting on the outright odds of a Draw at 3.30 odds.

Mainz  05 vs Augsburg

Alfred Finnobogason and Philipp Max are the driving force behind Augsburg’s impressive run to the top half of the table. Abdou Diallo and Yoshinori Muto are also doing great on helping Mainz battle in the middle of the pack. Expect these four to play well then these two sides meet at the Opel Arena.

WEEK 13 SUNDAY:

Schalke 04 vs FC Koln

Schalke players are definitely thrilled that they escaped the Signal-Iduna-Park with a point in tow, but they will surely want the entire three points when they face Koln. They still haven’t notched a win in the Bundesliga despite their astounding win over Arsenal, so I don’t see them winning on the road.

Hertha BSC vs Eintracht Frankfurt

This mid-table clash doesn’t seem like there is anything worth watching, but this could still provide enough drama to the neutral.  Sebastien Haller and Ante Rebic will probably cause a lot of havoc on the Berlin defences, but the hosts have been long used to coming back from behind. We could catch a back-and-forth between these two sides happening.

WEEK 13 MONDAY:

VfL Wolfsburg vs Borussia Monchengladbach

The visitors are still high off of their fantastic victory over the league leaders, so they will be coming to the Volkswagen Arena full of confidence. Meanwhile, Wolfsburg endured a second-half beating to Augsburg and will be hungry for a bounce-back win. Fans should expect fireworks in the final match of the game week.

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