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Jurgen Klopp explains how Ibrahima Konate “will add to the quality” Liverpool have

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Jurgen Klopp has long been an admirer of Ibrahima Konate and now that he is a Red, the manager is delighted at the defender who can be deployed straight out of the gates.

The Reds wasted little time in landing their first signing of the summer, with the 22-year-old joining just five days after Liverpool‘s season came to a close.

By triggering his £36 million release clause at RB Leipzig, Liverpool have landed a highly-rated talent to bolster their centre-back ranks for both the short and long-term.

The 6ft 4 defender spoke of his joy at putting pen to paper for “one of the best teams in the world” and his new manager was equally thrilled to now have Konate at his disposal.

“I’m really pleased we’ve been able to add a player of Ibrahima’s quality to our squad and he is someone I’ve admired for a long time, ever since I first became aware of his potential when he was at Sochaux,” Klopp told the club’s official website.

“After the problems we had with injuries in the centre-half position last season, there’s no doubt it was clear it was an area of the team we needed to strengthen.”

02 October 2019, Saxony, Leipzig: Soccer: Champions League, Group phase, Group G, 2nd matchday RB Leipzig - Olympique Lyon in the Red Bull Arena. Leipzig's player Ibrahima Konate on the ball. Photo: Jan Woitas/dpa-Zentralbild/dpa

Klopp also had a classy word for Nat Phillips, Rhys Williams and Ozan Kabak, all of whom stepped in and admirably got the job done as the Reds ended the season with Champions League football guaranteed next season.

And now Konate will have his chance to lay down a marker in this side and continue on his bright career to date which has seen his amass 95 senior outings at Leipzig by the age of 22.

“But I first have to say that the job Nat, Rhys and Ozan did was incredible. Unbelievable really,” he continued.

“In Ibrahima, we are signing a player who will add to the quality we already have here. His physical attributes are very impressive; he is quick, he is very strong and he is dominant in the air.

“He comes to us after playing more than 90 times for Leipzig in the Bundesliga and European football.

“I’m sure that number would have been more but for some injury, but even so that means he already has experience of what it takes to compete in two outstandingly difficult competitions.

“He also played for a team in the Champions League in high-pressure matches, who have a similar football vision to ourselves.

Ibrahima Konate (Fra) FOOTBALL : France espoirs vs Republique Tcheque - 09/09/2019 JBAutissier/Panoramic.

“I am confident we are signing a player who can play for us right away, but he is a boy of 22 years of age who has room to improve because of his massive potential. I know that’s something he is eager to work on with us to become an even better player.

“For me, that’s really exciting because I have seen how good he is already and I’m looking forward to working with him when he joins up with us in pre-season.”

Liverpool‘s pre-season is to commence on July 12, where Konate is expected to take full part after his summer with France’s U21s.


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