Naby Keïta may be slightly ahead of schedule in terms of acclimating himself to his next club’s colors. The midfielder, who is scheduled to join Liverpool next summer, has been picking up red cards in recent matches as though they were paint samples at a hardware store. Reds supporters will, however, draw some comfort from the fact that disciplinary suspensions have not historically been a huge issue for Keïta.
The midfielder’s most recent red card was received while on international duty for Guinea. Keïta, showing the qualities that had made him such a high priority target for Jürgen Klopp, had given his side the lead against Tunisia, but Guinea eventually fell two goals behind. With the result and any hopes of qualifying for the World Cup already gone, Keïta was judged to have caught an opponent with a flailing arm and was sent off.
This most recent red card follows another sending off in mid-September for a high boot that caught Borussia Mönchengladbach’s Christoph Kramer in the head. Parallels to Sadio Mané’s sending off were immediately drawn. While seeing two red cards in the space of a month is not ideal, this is not really a frequent occurrence for Keïta. In each of the 2015-16 and 2016-17 seasons, Keïta missed one match due to accumulated yellow cards. Not exactly a spotless record, but far from problematic.