Jurgen Klopp has ace up his sleeve as 'dream' Liverpool player finally poised to return


Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has an ace up his sleeve as Ibrahima Konate has now returned to the fray following a two-month injury absence. The star centre-back was described as an “absolute dream” by Reds icon Phil Thompson earlier this year.

Liverpool signed Konate from RB Leipzig at the start of last season. And the 23-year-old went on to enjoy a stellar maiden campaign at Anfield as he cemented his place in the Reds’ Champions League team on their run to the final.

The France international was then named in Klopp’s side for their European showdown with Real Madrid after starting the FA Cup final against Chelsea, while he was also handed a role from the outset when the Reds took on Wolves in a must-win game in the final Premier League clash of the season.

Konate was expected to battle it out with Joel Matip for a place at the heart of the Liverpool backline alongside Virgil van Dijk at the start of this campaign. But he suffered a muscle injury in a pre-season friendly against Strasbourg at the end of July. And he hasn’t played since.

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Konate scored in both legs of Liverpool’s Champions League quarter-final showdown with Benfica last season. And following the second encounter, Thompson was full of praise for him. “Konate is looking like an absolute dream,” the 68-year-old said. “He’s a wonderful player.”

Liverpool return to Premier League action for the first time in almost a month when they take on the Seagulls at Anfield after their clashes with Wolves and Chelsea were postponed in the aftermath of the queen’s death. And Klopp must now decide whether Konate is ready to thrust straight into his side or whether he will instead keep faith with Joel Matip, who made his first start of the season against Ajax ahead of the international break following his own injury layoff.

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