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Liverpool must drop Naby Keita vs Norwich City in the FA Cup

Liverpool host Norwich City in the fifth round of the FA Cup on Wednesday night off the back of a thrilling penalty shoot-out victory over Chelsea in the Carabao Cup final.

Jurgen Klopp’s side lifted their first trophy of the season and maintained their hopes of an incredible quadruple quest, and a tie at home to struggling Premier League side Norwich tonight certainly bodes well for their chances of doing a domestic cup double.

But, one man who the Reds boss must surely consider dropping from the starting line-up, is Naby Keita.

Is Keita good enough for Liverpool?

Yes!

Yes!

No!

No!

The Guinea international was a late call into the team for Chelsea after Thiago’s heart-breaking injury, but looked lost in midfield before being taken off by Klopp late into the second-half.

Writing in his post-match player ratings for The Liverpool Echo, Ian Doyle gave him a six, saying: “Understandably off the pace having been thrown in at the last minute, but gained confidence and one shot saved by Mendy. Subbed.”

With a record of just three goals and one assist in 21 games across all competitions, Keita hasn’t offered anywhere near the kind of attacking quality from someone who is supposedly a more creative player than Klopp’s usually functional midfield three.

Indeed, as per Whoscored, his average match rating of 6.95 ranks him as the 15th-best performing player in this entire Reds squad in the Premier League, and when you look at the underlying numbers behind that, it’s easy to see why.

He averages just 1.3 shots per game (even less than right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold), provides only 0.7 key passes per match (Neco Williams averages more), and lags even behind Joe Gomez when it comes to dribbles too with just 0.5.

Speaking after his performance in a 3-2 win against Atletico Madrid in the Champions League earlier this season, Dietmar Hamann criticised how Keita’s Liverpool career has gone.

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He said: “Keita was at fault for both goals. (Jordan) Henderson has been a brilliant leader since taking the captaincy and (James) Milner is 35 giving everything he possesses week in week out. Keita only wants to play when they’re in possession and cost €75m.

“Hugely disappointing considering it’s his fourth season. Simply not good enough.”

The £27m-rated ace just hasn’t been at the races at all this season, and with Harvey Elliott having recently made his comeback from injury, tonight’s FA Cup clash against Norwich might be the perfect time to see what the actual future of Liverpool’s midfield could do.

Meanwhile, Liverpool must unleash this star vs Norwich…

Article title: Liverpool must drop Naby Keita vs Norwich City in the FA Cup

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