Konate’s highlighted qualities suggest Liverpool will have potentially frightening starting centre-back partnership

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Ibrahima Konate’s former coaches and teammates have waxed lyrical over Liverpool’s first major summer signing.

Speaking to The Athletic, Pierre Gibaud, an old teammate of the Frenchman, was keen to highlight the centre-half’s maturity and pace.

“He trained with the first team for maybe one week and after that he played the first game against Monaco,” the former Sochaux captain said.

“I was so impressed by how he performed. Very strong, very calm and very composed with the ball. He played like a player who was used to playing at the level every week.

“The other thing that struck me about Ibrahima was that he was so fast.

“I only needed to play one match alongside Ibrahima to know that he would become a very good centre-back because he had everything that a top centre-back needs.”

With one of the most pleasing qualities on offer from Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez being the players’ speed, the fact that the Reds will be adding another pacy, but cultured, defender to the mix may very well raise concern among opposition forwards.

Certainly, Gibaud’s further comments only serve to highlight that Liverpool may have secured something of a bargain in the 22-year-old.

“Ibrahima is still young but he’s already played at a really high level in big Bundesliga games and also in the Champions League so he’s ready,” the 33-year-old added.

“He has learned a lot at Leipzig and I know he will prove to be a very important player for Liverpool. It’s good business by them.

“The Premier League is very physical but he has the stature and the strength to cope with that fine.

“Tall, fast and very good technically – what else do you want in a centre-back?”

While we wouldn’t expect our first signing of the window to be starting in the backline alongside our Dutch colossus immediately, the potential is certainly there for the former RB Leipzig man to form a frightening partnership with Van Dijk.

In the long-term, with Gomez only 24-years-of-age, the future of the heart of our defence looks very bright.

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