Ibrahima Konate: Concerns about his injury record?
Ibrahima KONATE of Leipzig and Kylian MBAPPE of PSG during the UEFA Champions League match between Paris Saint Germain and RB Leizpig at Parc des Princes on November 24, 2020 in Paris, France. (Photo by Anthony Dibon/Icon Sport via Getty Images)

Jurgen Klopp is seeking to put Liverpool's injury issues behind them as they start to get premature summer deals over the line for the 2021/22 campaign. 

Liverpool have found their new centre-back as reports on Monday claim RB Leipzig defender Ibrahima Konate is close to sealing a £34m move to Anfield.

The current Premier League champions have endured a tough defence of their title due to season-ending injuries to Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez, and Joel Matip with their unprecedented fitness concerns have hit the entire defence.

Liverpool are looking to bolster their defensive options and have identified the 21-year-old RB Leipzig centre-back as a primary target with hopes to conclude a deal before the summer transfer window.

There are various reports which states that they understand there is some way to go before any deal is concluded but Konate does have a release clause of £40m in his Leipzig contract and the Bundesliga club will stick to that rather than negotiate. 

The Reds were priced out of a mid-season move but are poised to meet Konate's £34million release clause to get the deal over the line this summer.

The defender is currently in Hungary for the group stages of the Under-21 European Championship. France lost their opening match of the tournament 1-0 to Denmark but responded with a 2-0 victory over Russia on Sunday.

Konate, 21, is considered one of the most promising defenders in Europe and would provide Jurgen Klopp with much-needed reinforcement in defence with many injuries occurring during this current campaign leaving them exposed to defensive problems half way through the  season.

This ruined any chances of Liverpool retaining the Premier League for a second consecutive season after a heavy injury list during the Christmas period.

This is why is important for Jurgen Klopp and the scouting department to find recruitment to ensure the Reds do not repeat the same mistakes by going into next season with minimum number centre backs at their disposal.

There is no doubting the Frenchman's precocious talent and Jurgen Klopp is a known admirer of the player.

Konte was an unused substitute when the sides met during this season Champions League round of 16 tie. Liverpool progressed into the next round beating RB Leipzig 4-0 on aggregate.

Liverpool's problem this season was not that their centre-backs are injury prone, it was the fact that all of their centre-backs got serious injuries in the same year.

  • Konate Injury record

Liverpool have had many injuries this season to various players throughout the course of the season. They are hoping the 21 year old can regain his fitness and manage his injuries.

Liverpool fans have been quick to voice their concerns over Ibrahima Konate once the news broke this morning that the Reds are close to securing the RB Leipzig star's services.

As mentioned, the Sochaux academy graduate has huge potential but a glance at his injury history is a worrying sight for Liverpool fans to read and will not fill Liverpool fans with excitement considering the amount of injuries suffered this season.

Konate has had plenty of injury problems over the past two years, missing a total of 393 days since the start of the 2019-20 season. Three consecutive muscle injuries have hampered his progression, before an ankle injury recently ruled out him for just under two months.


He was also ruled out of the majority of the 2019/20 season with muscle injuries which limited him to a total of 11 appearances.

Statistics experts transfermarkt calculate Konate has missed 56 games over the last three seasons due to injuries. As such, the news of his likely transfer has left some Reds supporters with mixed emotions, as they are keen for Liverpool to avoid signing another injury-prone centre-back.


Meanwhile, his 2020-21 season has been affected by coming back from the serious injury suffered last season and the unrelated 7-week ankle injury picked up two months later. 

On top of that, Konate's pass success rate is 83.5% this season, it has decreased from 88.6% in the injury-hit 2019-20 campaign.

  • Defensive Dilemma's

In the absence of their senior options Liverpool signed Ben Davies and loaned Ozan Kabak towards the end of the January window.

While Davies is yet to make his debut, Kabak has shown signs of promise in recent fixtures keeping 3 clean sheets in a row alongside Natt Phillps in defence. However the Reds may choose to activate a clause to sign him permanently from Schalke for £18million this summer.

One of Konate attributes is that he,six foot four inches he would be a huge presence at set pieces, he is also among the quickest centre-backs in Europe and is extremely strong in the air.

 If he joins, Konate will compete with Joe Gomez for the second centre-back slot alongside Van Dijk.

January arrival Ben Davies, who is yet to make his debut, will also be hoping for minutes with Joel Matip ahead of him in the first team pecking order. Ozan Kabak is currently on loan from Schalke, but Liverpool will reportedly sign only one of him or Konate.