Liverpool legend Phil Thompson has expressed his admiration for Ibrahima Konate after the 22-year-old put in yet another solid display for the Reds lastnight.
The former RB Leipzig man started alongside Joel Matip in a much-changed side to the one that earned a point against Manchester City last weekend.
The big Frenchman opened the scoring for the Reds against Benfica at Anfield, as he did a week ago in Lisbon in the first leg, and is beginning to look the part in a red shirt, something Thompson was keen to explain.
“Konate is looking like an absolute dream,” the 68-year-old told Off The Ball (via HITC).
“He’s a wonderful player, so there are no problems making these changes.”
Konate moved to Merseyside from the German club at the beginning of the season and has found himself behind Matip in the pecking order to partner Virgil van Dijk for most of the season.
The Paris born defender has still made 21 appearances for Jurgen Klopp’s side this term and now has two goals in his last two games.
Thompson isn’t the only one to be praising Konate for his showing in the 3-3 draw against the Portuguese outfit.
Martin Keown has also admitted his joy at watching him play; labelling him ‘physically dominant’.
The central defender is tall, strong and full of pace – three key characteristics that mean he has the potential to succeed at Anfield.
With the high defensive line that we’ve adopted this season, his speed can be vital in stifling any attacks from the opposition and preventing them from testing Alisson Becker in goal.
Although we did concede three goals to Benfica last night, seven changes had been made from the side that started our game last time out at the Etihad.
It was clear that there was a slight lack of fluidity in the team but it was great to see players such as Kostas Tsimikas, Joe Gomez and Luis Diaz earn minutes from the start.
It’ll be interesting to see who Klopp selects to partner van Dijk on Saturday at Wembley when we face City in the FA Cup semi-final – we now have numerous options in the central defensive area which is great to see.