Liverpool’s new signing Ibrahima Konate will step into the shirt of Georginio Wijnaldum next season.
The club have confirmed the £36m signing from RB Leipzig will wear the No. 5 shirt, inheriting the number from Wijnaldum.
Konate, who was born in Paris, is Liverpool’s only summer signing to date and he takes over traditional defensive number from the Dutchman, who plied his trade in midfield and has moved on to Paris.
Konate, 22, though is a centre-back and is expected to push Joe Gomez and Joel Matip to become Virgil van Dijk’s defensive partner. And with the Reds handing the Paris-born defender the No. 5 shirt fans can be forgiven in thinking he will be first-choice alongside Van Dijk.
The former Sochaux man, who has spent his summer in Dubai and France, has not yet moved into his house in Liverpool.
He will be one of the first players to report for pre-season training next week.
Jurgen Klopp is still on the lookout for new players this summer. A replacement for Wijnaldum is thought to be top of Klopp’s wanted list.
A number of players have been mentioned as targets with Liverpool reportedly enquiring about Sergej Milinkovic-Savic at Lazio.
Italian outlet Calciomercato mentioned the Reds as tentative suitors for the Serbia man. However, after “making calls” the price tag of €70m-80m has put off Michael Edwards an Co.
Klopp wants trio?
Meanwhile, Spanish website Fichajes, says Klopp ‘has informed the board that it is necessary to make important signings to be able to compete against Manchester City and Chelsea’.
Despite a very strong starting XI, Klopp insists he ‘needs to have a more competitive squad’. As such, he has ‘requested’ that Liverpool try to make three more signings.
Top of Klopp’s requirements are a new midfielder. With Georginio Wijnaldum departing for PSG, filling his gap becomes an immediate priority.
As such, it’s reported that Klopp wants both Youri Tielemans and Renato Sanches brought in.
Tielemans – who has been linked heavily with a move to Anfield – is ‘one of Klopp’s express wishes’. However, the report cites Leicester’s big demands being problematic. As such, they claim a swap deal of some kind could provide a solution.
Sanches, meanwhile, ‘is the player Klopp wants to replace Wijnaldum’ with his value ‘not as high as that of the other two names’.
Finally, Klopp is also reportedly wanting to freshen up his attack with the capture of Kingsley Coman, who featured for France at Euro 2020.