Liverpool: Decisive still against Benfica, Ibrahima Konate gaining momentum with Reds

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Ibrahima Konate was one of the great architects of Liverpool’s qualification against Benfica in the quarter-finals of the Champions League. Scorer out and back, the 22-year-old French defender has scored on the mind of Jurgen Klopp, who has made little use of him in the Premier League since arriving last summer.

Two identical head shots. or approx. In the quarter-finals of the Champions League, Ibrahima Konate stood out during a double clash between Liverpool and Benfica. The French defender opened the scoring from a corner en route to Portugal (1–3), then on a return to Anfield (3–3). Every time after a quarter of an hour of play. That’s enough to get the Reds back on track to qualify for the semi-finals. Above all, what are important points in the eyes of Jurgen Klopp, which made him one of their strong men in the Champions League. Failed to earn him playing time in the Premier League, where Virgil van Dijk and Joel Matip often form the central hinge.

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Konate has played five of Liverpool’s last six C1 matches (in full). But he has played only one of the last eleven league games (a 1-0 win over West Ham earlier this month). The 22-year-old Rock has only appeared on the English lawn eight times this season (always as a starter), never appearing in more than two games in a row. He made it to the National Cup, where he was often called. But so far, it has stood mainly on the European landscape.

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“He defends by moving”

The 1.94m Colossus, admitted to Leipzig (euro 40 million) last summer, released a big performance at the San Siro during a win against Inter in mid-February (0-2). The alliance with Van Dijk, the Paris native had effected aid in Lombardy. BT Sport’s columnist, former England defender Rio Ferdinand, praised their “huge match”. Our RMC Sport Consultant Johan Jourou is also spellbound. “He’s a player I really appreciate, he’s a defender who wants to defend while moving. He’s clean, moves quickly, he’s perfect,” said the former Swiss who works for Arsenal. Sees international. ,

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During the group stage, Konate already made an impression by strangling Zlatan Ibrahimovic during the Reds’ win against AC Milan. Still in San Siro (1-2). Despite his talent, Klopp expects more from his player who trained at Souchaux. Especially in terms of reliability. The German coach said two weeks ago, “He has all the qualities to be a good central defender. But it always happens with young players, especially when you have these skills, sometimes the level of concentration drops a bit.” A little bit here and there. So yeah, he can do a lot better. But he’s already really good, so it helps.”

“I have a lot of room for improvement”

Conate, who grew up in the district of Roquette, to the east of the capital, is aware of his own possibilities. “I feel like I’m making progress on a daily basis, he explained after my success at Inter in February. I know I have a lot of room for improvement. That’s when I see I’m performing like this So it makes me happy, but as soon as one game is over, I’ve already forgotten. I think about the next game, which I have to improve even more.”

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5 recovery from Georgino Wijnaldum (left for PSG), under contract until 2026, seems on track to settle at Mersey’s coast. Especially since a crazy calendar awaits the Reds in the coming weeks, with the FA Cup semi-finals at Manchester City on Saturday (4.30pm) welcoming great rivals Manchester United next Tuesday (9pm), the Derby. Against Everton on 24 April (5:30 pm) and a double clash with Villarreal in the Champions League semi-final (27 April at Anfield, 3 May in Spain).

Strong Competition Between the Blues

A tough sequence that could allow Konate to gain even more power. The point of convincing Didier Deschamps? Malian-born international esports not yet selected with blues. Seven months before the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, he seems taboo for the moment called for the first time during the final rally by Rafael Varane, Presnel Kimpembe, Jules Condé, Lucas Hernandez or William Saliba. Without forgetting Kurt Zouma. But if he continues to shine with Liverpool, Clarefontaine’s doors could open despite strong competition.

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