RB Leipzig have announced the signing of Amadou Haidara from Salzburg, with coach Ralf Rangnick comparing the midfielder to Naby Keita.
Haidara arrives on a five-year deal from the Austrian side, who are linked to Leipzig through the club’s owner, drinks company Red Bull.
The Mali international will have to wait to make his debut for the Bundesliga side as he is sidelined with a knee injury.
Rangnick, though, feels Haidara will be able to make a significant impact in Leipzig’s midfield as a successor to Keita, who joined Liverpool this year.
“We are delighted to have signed Amadou,” said the Leipzig coach.
“There aren’t too many players of his age who have so much potential. He has all the capabilities to follow in Naby Keita’s footsteps.
“Of course, it’s a shame that he won’t be able to play for a bit due to injury, but we hope that he’s back to full fitness soon, and will be able to play a part in the second half of the season.”
Welcome to Leipzig, Amadou pic.twitter.com/f4azeVl9Oa
— RB Leipzig English (@RBLeipzig_EN) December 22, 2018
Haidara, 20, is fully focusing on his recovery after completing a move to Leipzig for an undisclosed fee.
“I’m very pleased to have joined RB Leipzig, and of course, get the opportunity to play in the Bundesliga. My priority now is to get back to full fitness as soon as possible,” he told the club’s website.
“I’m on the right track but I still need time until I’m ready to play. I’m really motivated and can’t wait to join up with the squad in Leipzig. Playing here will help me to further develop and also prove myself in the Bundesliga.”
Amadou #Haidara on his transfer: “It was an honour for me to start my career at FC Red Bull Salzburg. At the end of the journey we’ve taken together, I can only say that it was a great pleasure to have been a part of this Salzburg team.” #MerciDoudou pic.twitter.com/LZSb4cgtRY
— FC Red Bull Salzburg EN (@FCRBS_EN) December 22, 2018
Salzburg sporting director Christoph Freund, meanwhile, was pleased his side have developed Haidara.
“We are very proud that another young player and extraordinary person in Amadou Haidara has developed well enough in the last two-and-a-half years to make the leap to a top European league,” he said.
“We hope that he is over his knee injury soon and he is able to continue his impressive development, which is far from being over. We hope he gets better soon and wish him all the very best for a very successful future!”
Haidara becomes Leipzig’s latest signing ahead of the January transfer window, with the club – fourth in the Bundesliga – having already sealed a deal for 19-year-old United States international Tyler Adams from New York Red Bulls.
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