Journalists and insiders from Guinea have been feeding the European press and Reds supporters with information about Naby Keita's hopes of joining Liverpool during the summer.
The English Premier League club had two bids turned down by Leipzig, the last at £66 million. Rangnick has been consistent with his statements throughout the transfer window, underlining that Keita's not for sale at any price.
After finishing second in the league, this season they will make their Uefa Champions League debut and will need Keita to bolster their chances of announcing their arrival with a competitive showing in Europe.
Earlier this week Keita's frustration with Rangnick turning down Liverpool, spilled onto the training ground when the Guinea midfielder injured teammate Diego Demme, leading coach Ralph Hassenhuttl to abandon the session immediately and allow tempers to cool.
Then Rangnick came out and blamed Keita's "village" to be turning his head toward Liverpool.
“A whole village in Guinea or somebody from their entourage tells the players why they must do something right away. I can’t blame the players,” said Rangnick.
Now the German's come out and explained that comment as follows.
“I know Naby from the very first day when he came to Salzburg,” Rangnick said in The Guardian. “We therefore have a very close relationship, also to his adviser. We are in a trusting exchange. That is exactly what I said in my lecture in Bochum.
“Behind many players with an African background, and I’ve met a lot of them, there is a clan and sometimes a whole village, that lives from the help of one football player. And it’s the case that there are people behind Naby, that demand his transfer,” added the Leipzig director.
This is how Rangnick responded to Tweets from Africa that pointed out how Keita's 'village' is much larger than Leipzig.
“Believe me, my knowledge in geography is good enough, to differentiate between Guinea and Africa.”
According to journalist Dominic King, Liverpool won't make a third bid for Keita and are likely to wait for next year when Leipzig changes their stance due to an expected release clause.
You can read the Twitter storm about Rangnick's comments below:
The "village" Naby Keita is from is three time bigger than Lepizig. He was born in Conakry. Capital of Guinea. Population 1.7 million— Kaveh Solhekol (@SkyKaveh) July 27, 2017
Reminder that Keita was born in a city with over double the population of Leipzig, and almost 50x the population of Rangnick's hometown. pic.twitter.com/7aI8A41c4S— Si (@PhantomGoal) July 27, 2017
Rangnick's public insult of Keita - now given grounds (maybe) to terminate his contract without notice, acc to art. 626,Abs.1,BGB German law— indykaila News (@indykaila) July 27, 2017
Can't believe Keita is feeding his whole hometown of nearly 2m people on £30k a week.— Mubashir (@MubzLFC) July 27, 2017
Keita is from a city called Conakry with a population of over 1 million people. Leipzig have a population of 582,277. Fuck off Rangnick.— - (@AnfieldRd96) July 27, 2017
Rangnick 's public insult of Keita - now given grounds to terminate his contract without notice, acc to art. 626, Abs.1, BGB (German law) ⚖— Fields of Anfield Rd (@FOARsite) July 26, 2017
Rangnicks comments are 100% racist. He's insinuating that Keita is controlled by his 'little' village. No way he says that about a white kid— Red Mysterio (@redmysterio96) July 26, 2017
Likely that Keita/reps would clash with RBL prior to today's comments as Keita his mind made up on move, almost inevitable they'll clash now— DaveOCKOP (@DaveOCKOP) July 26, 2017
Rangnick has shot himself in the foot. No way Keita is staying at Leipzig now. #LFC— KLPPERHEAD (@Klopperhead) July 26, 2017
So it came from Keita injuring his teammate to his club director calling his country 'a village' as a racist remark. What a saga.— Sam (@VintageSaIah) July 26, 2017
Naby Keita's response, to what seems exceptionally strong words this afternoon, will be one to watch as Liverpool touch down in Germany— Chris Williams (@Chris78Williams) July 26, 2017