Liverpool could be handed selection dilemma ahead of 2021/22 campaign as Klopp unwilling to risk duo in pre-season

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There’s a possibility that summer signing Ibrahima Konate and Joel Matip could be paired together for Liverpool’s opening league fixture against Daniel Farke’s Norwich City.

This comes from James Pearce of The Athletic, who noted that it wouldn’t be beyond the realm of reality for the centre-halves to start at Carrow Road.

“Their [Van Dijk and Gomez] return is eagerly anticipated but Klopp is in a position where he doesn’t need to take any risks,” the reporter wrote.

“Two major positives from Liverpool’s opening fortnight in Austria have been how sharp Matip has looked on his return to action and how quickly Konate has settled in.

“They complemented each other well during Friday’s goalless opening 45 minutes against Mainz and it wouldn’t be a surprise to see them line up together at Carrow Road.

Given Jurgen Klopp admitted post the 1-0 victory over Mainz that he wasn’t prepared to risk either one of his first-choice duo against Hertha Berlin, it certainly leaves the pair with little time to prepare for the full season.

“As the wait goes on for Van Dijk and Gomez, Konate and Matip look like being the double act tasked with helping to get 2021-22 off to a flyer.”

READ MORE: Liverpool’s three standout performers v Mainz as Reds secure first pre-season victory

As impressive as both Matip and Konate have been in pre-season, it’s a completely different ball game compared to the season proper.

Nonetheless, it’s difficult to overlook just how comfortable the Frenchman appeared playing a high line, demonstrating remarkable recovery pace on several occasions to keep the scoreline level in Austria.

It’s not a perfect situation for Klopp heading into the 2021/22 campaign, though far from being disastrous given the quality waiting in the wings.

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1 Comment

  1. Worryingly, other clubs are fighting to get Sancho, Kane and other top, top players and we see mentions of Milner potentially being a central defensive midfielder, Minamino having a new chance, Origi being tried in a new position and keita having a greater role this season! in other words, despite us not looking like scoring, ever, in the last year, and particularly in the last few pre-season games, the money men at FSG will NOT be opening their wallets. How are we supposed to catch City if they get Grealish and Kane and we try to get another few months out of an ageing Milner?

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