RB Leipizig midfielder Naby Keita has claimed he turned down interest from Arsenal, Liverpool and other Premier League clubs to sign for the Bundesliga side in the summer.
Keita, 21, was widely linked with a move to the Premier League after two seasons at Red Bull Salzburg, winning the Austrian league title in both years.
“Arsenal, Manchester City and Southampton were all interested in signing me and Liverpool as well, although I did not speak with their coach,” Keita told SportNet.
“I did not want to join a big Champions League club right away. It is too early for that. I want to prove myself in the Bundesliga first now.”
The Guinea international has proven to be an excellent acquisition by RBL, who currently sit second in the Bundesliga table, just two points off Bayern Munich after eight games.
Keita has been a crucial contributor in his side’s fine form, scoring three times including the only goal in a victory over Borussia Dortmund.