Frank discussion Chelsea 'hold talks' with Frank Lampard over manager's job
By Jimoh Mubarak
2 months ago
- Top Stories
Naby Keita, who joined the rest of the Guinean squad in the Moroccan city of Marrakesh on Monday night, has disclosed to the media that he is not completely fit.
The former RB Leipzig midfielder has been away from action since he suffered a groin injury in the first leg of Liverpool’s Champions League semi-final clash against Barcelona on May 1.
It was initially suggested that Keita will spend at least two months on the sideline – ruling him out of the African Cup of Nations - but the Guinean international showed rapid speed in his recovery from the thigh problem and was named in Coach Paul Put’s preliminary squad on the back of that development.
Keita, however, stayed in Liverpool to continue his recovery process when the Guinean camp was open for Afcon preparations on June 1 in Conakry.
The 24-year-old midfielder, who was unavailable in Guinea’s last Afcon preparatory game against the Gambia in Marrakesh on June 7, has now joined the rest of the squad in their Moroccan base.
“I am very happy to meet my teammates,” Keita is quoted as saying by Guineefoot.info on his arrival in Marrakesh.
“I am hoping to start work now even though I am not 100% fit, but when I was in Liverpool - I had already started training with the ball.
“Upon my arrival here, I am going to train with the team to see what’s next. I like to assure the fans, my teammates and the coach that I should be ready for Guinea’s first match.
“I am 100% motivated,” the Liverpool midfielder added.
The Syli Nationale are scheduled to play a friendly game against Benin on Tuesday, before concluding their Afcon preparations with another friendly game against Egypt on June 16.
Keita’s Guinea is drawn in Group B and will play their opening African Cup of Nations game against Madagascar on June 22, before facing Nigeria and Burundi on June 26 and June 30, respectively.
And according to Goal , Chelsea plan to open discussions with Lampard over the soon-to-be vacant position.
Ajax boss Erik ten Hag has also been considered for the role but he is said to be cautious about taking the job due to Chelsea’s two-window transfer ban.
Massimiliano Allegri, who recently stepped down as Juve boss after winning five consecutive titles with the club, shares the same concerns as the Dutchman.
Another manager whose name also been thrown in the hat is Rafael Benitez , who managed Chelsea on an interim period for part of the 2012/13 season.
The Newcastle boss’ current deal expires this summer and there have been difficulties in agreeing a renewal for him to stay on at St James’ Park.
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