Ibrahima Konaté – A Risky Signing or One for the Ages?

Ibrahima Konaté – A Risky Signing or One for the Ages?
May 28, 2021 Mizgan Masani

Liverpool’s need for a centre-back

Liverpool have completed the signing of French U-21 international centre-back Ibrahima Konaté from RB Leipzig. 

It has been well documented that the Reds would need to dip in the market for a central defender after selling Dejan Lovren last summer, and struggling for options in that position when the other three centre-backs – Joel Matip, Joe Gomez and Virgil van Dijk – got season-ending injuries. They did sign Ozan Kabak on loan and bought Ben Davies in January, but it was more of a desperation move rather than a long-term one.

Moreover, looking forward to next season and even with all three injured centre-backs scheduled to be back for the pre-season, it is understood that manager Jurgen Klopp cannot risk them from the start of the campaign. Rather, the only option is to bed them in slowly, knowing that recurrence of the injury is a possibility.

Out of the three, Matip has been injury-prone in his time at Liverpool, while Gomez already has had two long-term injuries in the last three years before having another one in October. So, hoping that van Dijk regains his pre-injury sharpness as soon as possible, Klopp would take it slow with the other two options. 

Hence, despite having Nat Phillips and Rhys Williams as backup options at best, it was vital that Liverpool go and sign a centre-back who matches the profile of the centre-back they need.

Keeping all that things in mind, let us take a look at the profile of Ibrahima Konaté in depth and put some conclusions in place:

Introduction to Ibrahima Konaté

Height – 1.94m, right-footed centre-back who plays on the right-hand side of central defence.

Konaté has been at Leipzig since 2017, arriving from Sochaux and has been one of the most sought after young centre-backs in Europe. He has played 66 Bundesliga games for the German side, along with eight appearances in the Champions League. The 2018/19 campaign was when people first started noticing his talents. 

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