Guinea coach explains Keita’s importance

Guinea coach explains Keita’s importance
Guinea national team coach Didier Six

by Graeme Jackson

Thursday Mar 18, 2021. 16:00

Guinea national team coach Didier Six has described Naby Keita as a true leader and insists he is not concerned by the midfielder’s lack of playing time at club level.

Keita has largely been a peripheral figure at Liverpool this season, but nonetheless remains a key man for Syli Nationale – though Six insists that he has not built his team around the 26-year-old.

“In my opinion, Keita has magical feet, and I decided to give him the captaincy because he’s a true leader,” Six is quoted by FIFA.

“He’s never abrasive with his team-mates. The way he talks to them is very similar to the way [Zinedine] Zidane deals with his players, and he communicates the message in a wonderful way.

“When he came back from injury, I gave him two full games in four days and he helped us a lot, like scoring against a strong Mali team in Mali.

“He puts himself at the disposal of the team and his team-mates do all they can to assist him. We always need his magic and battling spirit on the pitch.”

Guinea and Six will look to Keita to guide the team into the finals of the next Africa Cup of Nations.

The Syli Nationale are well placed in Group A of the qualifiers, just two points behind already-qualified Mali and with a five-point buffer to third-placed Namibia.

They face Mali in Conakry and Namibia in Windhoek in their final two qualifiers, where avoiding defeat in the latter game will book a slot at the tournament in Cameroon.

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