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Smiling Ibrahima Konate dodges question on Jurgen Klopp amid Liverpool links


Ibrahima Konate

 

RB Leizpig star Ibrahima Konate opted to dodge a question centering on Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp this week, amid continuous speculation surrounding his future.

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Central defender Konate’s name has of course taken centre stage in the transfer market over the last couple of weeks.

This comes amid widespread claims that Premier League champions Liverpool are readying a summer assault for the 21-year-old.

The heart of the club’s backline has proven a major problem area for the Reds to this point in the campaign, amid a host of long-term injury problems.

Smiling Ibrahima Konate dodges question on Jurgen Klopp amid Liverpool links

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND – OCTOBER 17: (THE SUN OUT, THE SUN ON SUNDAY OUT )Virgil van Dijk of Liverpool collides with Everton’s goalkeeper Jordan Pickford during the Premier League match between Everton and Liverpool at Goodison Park on October 17, 2020 in Liverpool, England. Sporting stadiums around the UK remain under strict restrictions due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venues resulting in games being played behind closed doors. (Photo by John Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

And Konate, in turn, appears to have been identified as the kind of player ready to step into Jurgen Klopp’s ranks for years to come.

Last Monday, the reliable David Ornstein of the Athletic went as far as to claim that the transfer chiefs on the red half of Merseyside were working towards ‘finalising’ a deal for the Frenchman.

This comes with Konate’s RB Leipzig contract containing a release clause worth just €40m.

‘Cannot answer!’

As outlined above, though, whilst all signs appear to point towards an imminent Anfield switch for the stopper, Konate himself remains keen to play the subject of his future down.

Speaking on the UMM YouTube channel this week, the 21-year-old partook in a game of ‘In That Order’.

The interviewer, in turn, opted to chance his arm with one of his questions, asking Konate to rank Jose Mourinho, Pep Guardiola and, significantly, Jurgen Klopp, from best to worst.

The Leipzig star, however, had his wits very much about him, and, with a wry smile painted across his face, replied:

‘No, no, no, no. I think I cannot answer this question. I don’t know, I don’t know, I don’t know.’

Konate was less shy about ranking the trio of Sergio Ramos, David Alaba and potential future teammate Virgil van Dijk, though, showing little hesitation in naming Real Madrid captain Ramos as the world’s best defender:

‘Ramos – number one of course. Van Dijk, then Alaba.’

 

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Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 Manchester City FC 31 45 74
2 Manchester United FC 30 25 60
3 Leicester City FC 30 19 56
4 West Ham United FC 30 11 52
5 Chelsea FC 30 16 51
6 Tottenham Hotspur FC 30 19 49
7 Liverpool FC 30 15 49
8 Everton FC 29 3 47
9 Aston Villa FC 29 11 44
10 Arsenal FC 30 5 42
11 Leeds United 30 -1 42
12 Crystal Palace FC 30 -16 38
13 Southampton FC 30 -14 36
14 Wolverhampton Wanderers FC 30 -11 35
15 Burnley FC 30 -16 33
16 Brighton & Hove Albion FC 30 -5 32
17 Newcastle United FC 30 -20 29
18 Fulham FC 31 -17 26
19 West Bromwich Albion 30 -34 21
20 Sheffield United FC 30 -35 14
Player Team Goals
Kane, Harry Tottenham Hotspur FC 19
Salah, Mohamed Liverpool FC 18
Fernandes, Bruno Manchester United FC 16
Bamford, Patrick Leeds United 14
Calvert-Lewin, Dominic Everton FC 14
Son, Heung Min Tottenham Hotspur FC 13
Vardy, Jamie Leicester City FC 12
Gundogan, Ilkay Manchester City FC 12
Watkins, Ollie Aston Villa FC 11
Lacazette, Alexandre Arsenal FC 11
Rashford, Marcus Manchester United FC 10
Wilson, Callum Newcastle United FC 10
Sterling, Raheem Manchester City FC 9
Ings, Danny Southampton FC 9
Mahrez, Riyad Manchester City FC 9
Barnes, Harvey Leicester City FC 9
Zaha, Wilfried Crystal Palace FC 9
Aubameyang, Pierre-Emerick Arsenal FC 9
Soucek, Tomas West Ham United FC 9
Maddison, James Leicester City FC 8



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