Liverpool closing in on €35m deal to sign RB Leipzig’s Ibrahima Konate

    Liverpool have agreed personal terms with RB Leipzig centre-back Ibrahima Konate and are preparing to pay the Frenchman’s release clause to make him their first signing of the summer.

    The Reds were revealed to be in advanced negotiations with Konate back in March, although after news quietened down somewhat, numerous reports in Germany suggested there was no truth to the links at all.

    Ibrahima Konate
    Early links to Konate appear to have been proven right | Boris Streubel/Getty Images

    Well, it seems like they may have been wrong.

    Fabrizio Romano has now revealed on Twitter that Liverpool have come to an agreement over personal terms with the 21-year-old, who will sign a five-year contract upon his arrival at Anfield.

    All that is left to do is for Liverpool to trigger Konate’s release clause, though the true value of which has been disputed.

    When the links to Konate first surfaced, a release clause of around £35m was thought to be accurate, but that figure has since dropped to close to the £28m mark. Romano has put it somewhere in the middle. Whichever way, it’s a real bargain.

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    Jurgen Klopp is keen to bring in a new face after a season filled with defensive chaos. Both Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez picked up early knee injuries which brought their seasons to an end, and the only other healthy centre-back, Joel Matip, followed them to the sidelines soon after.

    Jurgen Klopp
    Klopp wants more defensive options | Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

    It’s meant Klopp has had to chop and change his back line, using a myriad of combinations of midfielders and academy graduates just to try and stay afloat, before finding a temporary fix in the form of Ozan Kabak in January.

    Kabak joined on loan from Schalke, with Liverpool negotiating the option to sign the 21-year-old Turkey international for around £18m. The club still wish to sign him and following Schalke’s relegation from the Bundesliga, a fresh deal could be easier to strike.

    For more from ​Tom Gott, follow him on ​Twitter!

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