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First international call-up for Liverpool star underlines club’s £36m transfer success

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Ibrahima Konate earns first call-up for France to further highlight Liverpool transfer success

The official Liverpool website has confirmed that Ibrahima Konate will travel with France for their remaining UEFA Nations League fixtures this month.

This is the 23-year-old defender’s first call-up to Les Bleus‘ senior side after a triumphant season with the Reds. Didier Deschamps’ team takes on Croatia on 6th June before travelling to Austria four days later.

They then host the Croats on June 13th. It remains to be seen if Konate is handed a start in any of these games but given that he has been called up after a brilliant season at Anfield, chances are he will earn his first cap for France.

Ibrahima Konate earns first call-up for France to further highlight Liverpool transfer success
Ibrahima Konate of Liverpool is challenged by Vinicius Junior of Real Madrid during the UEFA Champions League final. (Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images)

And that further proves that the Reds were utterly successful in their dealing with RB Leipzig for Konate. The Reds went through a horrid injury crisis in the 2021/22 season right after they sold Dejan Lovren to Zenit St Petersburg and didn’t replace him with a new face.

The future is bright for Konate

But last summer, they more than made up for it by bringing in Konate from the Bundesliga. The Merseysiders paid £36million for the Frenchman while his defensive partner Dayot Upamecano headed out to Bayern Munich.

To come in at Liverpool and become the club’s first-choice defender in the UEFA Champions League is no small feat for a player of his age. Given Joel Matip’s fitness record in England, it was imperative that Jurgen Klopp managed his minutes well.

Liverpool have found a gem of a centre-back in Ibrahima Konate after signing him from RB Leipzig.
Liverpool have found a gem of a centre-back in Ibrahima Konate after signing him from RB Leipzig.

Joe Gomez has himself had issues with injury, which is why the added cover that Konate provided was necessary. The 1.94m tall centre-back started every single one of our games in the EFL Cup.

And he was present in our backline in both legs of the quarter-final, semi-final, as well as the one-off final encounter in the UCL this season. To win Klopp’s trust to this extent shows that Konate has a big future ahead of him.

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He is just 23 and is only getting started. Virgil van Dijk and Joel Matip both turn 31 in the coming months, and it is clear that Konate will be the man to step in for either of them in the future.

But it is his contributions in the present that really make him an astute signing for the Reds. A big season lies ahead for him, with the FIFA World Cup in Qatar just months away.