RB Leipzig defender Ibrahima Konate is on the verge of joining Liverpool. The French 22-year-old is a key target for the Reds as they want to strengthen their backline this summer.
The latest development in the Konate Liverpool transfer saga happened as the Reds decided not to make Kabak’s move permanent. Ozan Kabak joined Liverpool on a loan from Schalke in January. They had the option to sign him permanently for £18 million only.
However, with the Reds securing the Champions League qualification on the final day of the Premier League, things have changed. They are now lining up a move for Konate, who is reportedly available for £35 million.
KONATE TO PUSH FOR LIVERPOOL MOVE
RB Leipzig will undergo massive changes this summer. The club will lose their best player in Dayot Upamecano to the league rivals Bayern Munich. This was followed up by their manager Julian Nagelsmann deciding to move in the same direction. Consequently, Leipzig have weakened themselves and strengthened their rival.
As a result of these developments, any move for Konate would be hard. Leipzig lost one of their main centre-back and losing Konate will further weaken them. The other centre-back options for Die Roten Bullen are Willi Orban and Lukas Klostermann.
The France U21 international has set his eyes on a move to England. Konate is reported to have agreed on personal terms with Liverpool and have a 5 year deal in place. Fabrizio Romano,the transfer gurus, latest tweets have strengthened these reports.
KABAK THE KEY
Things happened to speed up in recent weeks, especially after the Kabak decision. Liverpool is not looking to make the Turkish defenders move permanent. Therefore Kabak will have to return to Schalke, who was relegated from the Bundesliga this season.
In addition, Schalke wants to cash in on their Turkish defender and might have found a solution in RB Leipzig. Having lost Upamecano and with Konate close to a move, Kabak offers a decent replacement. The 21-year-old has experience playing in the league. Leicester City is also reported to be interested in Kabak and wants to pair him alongside his Turkish compatriot Caglar Soyuncu.
Meanwhile, Virgil Van Dijk, Joe Gomez, and Joel Matip are ready to return in the next season for Liverpool. Nathaniel Philips was also impressive during this season and will provide excellent depth. Konate could provide more competition for the center-back spots in the team. And seeing Kabak’s performance this season he needs improvement. This might be the reason for the Reds to chose Konate over Kabak.
Liverpool ended the season 3rd in the Premier League and qualified for the Champions League. They will be ready to reinforce their team and fight for titles next season. Konate could be the first step in doing so.