LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, July 31, 2022: Liverpool's Ibrahima Konaté during a pre-season friendly match between Liverpool FC and RC Strasbourg Alsace at Anfield. Strasbourg won 3-0. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Liverpool handed another big injury boost with Ibrahima Konate

Liverpool are expected to have a much stronger squad upon their return to action, with Ibrahima Konate the latest to find fitness after a long layoff.

Konate is yet to feature for the Reds this season, having been forced off midway through the 3-0 loss to Strasbourg in the final game of pre-season.

The Frenchman has, therefore, missed almost two months, with a knee problem suffered at Anfield one of many setbacks to Jurgen Klopp‘s squad already this campaign.

In his absence, Joel Matip, Joe Gomez and Nat Phillips have all partnered Virgil van Dijk at the back, with only two clean sheets kept in nine games.

Having ended his first season in imperious form, showing his potential as a world-class defender, Konate has undoubtedly been missed.

But according to French outlet RMC Sport, the 23-year-old “just received the green light from Liverpool medical staff for a possible return to the squad next weekend against Brighton.”

It was already known that Konate had returned to light training prior to the international break, but 17 days between fixtures has allowed him to regain fitness before joining his team-mates.

LEIPZIG, GERMANY - Thursday, July 21, 2022: Liverpool's Ibrahima Konaté during a pre-season friendly match between RB Leipzig and Liverpool FC at the Red Bull Arena. Liverpool won 5-0. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

As it stands, Klopp will have five fit centre-backs to choose from, though he is likely to take a cautious approach with Konate given the nature of his injury.

Matip has impressed having returned from an issue of his own, taking over from Gomez after an abject display from the Englishman during the 4-1 humiliation at Napoli on September 7.

The availability of Liverpool’s No. 32 should allow Klopp to ease Konate back in, though with nine games to come in October alone there should be no shortage of opportunities.

Jordan Henderson has also recovered from a hamstring injury to return during the break, while Curtis Jones, Andy Robertson, Caoimhin Kelleher and Calvin Ramsay are not believed to be far off.

So far, there have been no new injuries picked up by Liverpool’s internationals, with Mohamed Salah allowed to return early from Egypt duty in order to rest and the likes of Trent Alexander-Arnold and Roberto Firmino going unused.