Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur are reportedly ready to rival Liverpool in pursuit of RB Leipzig defender Ibrahima Konate this summer.
RB Leipzig have been the meanest team in the Bundesliga this season and their defenders have emerged as the hottest prospects in the transfer market. Dayot Upamecano, for one, is destined to leave the club, but it appears his defensive partner Ibrahima Konate could follow suit as well, according to Christian Falk.
The Sport Bild journalist has claimed that the Frenchman has a release clause of €40 million that can be activated in the summer. It has put Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur on red alert. The Premier League duo could even rival Liverpool, who were already linked with a move to Konate.
It could translate into a fascinating transfer battle as many critics claim Konate is an even better option than Upamecano due to superior physique. The youngster is also incredibly fast and is able to recover spaces quickly, which combined with his passing ability – truly makes him a world-class prospect for any big club in Europe.
Liverpool’s interest is hardly surprising as they need a long-term partner for Virgil van Dijk and a competitor for Joe Gomez, especially with the players struggling with injuries this season. They are apparently looking for emergency options following the recent injuries to Joel Matip and Fabinho, with Shkodran Mustafi among the players potentially available.
Nevertheless, a move for Konate in the summer could make sense, not only for Liverpool but for Manchester United as well. The Frenchman’s tactical astuteness and pace should combine well with the more robust nature of Harry Maguire, ultimately adding more variety to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s defensive unit.
Meanwhile, at Tottenham, Jose Mourinho is hoping to find a reliable long-term defensive option, with Toby Alderweireld on the wrong side of 30. Konate, in that regard, would be an ideal option and could even emerge as an upgrade over another defensive talent in Joe Rodon.
At the end of the day, however, a lot could depend on how these clubs fare in the ongoing campaign. Missing out on the Champions League, in particular, could hamper their chances of securing the services of Konate, who is one of the most gifted defenders in Europe right now. But for a fee of just €40 million, he could indeed be a bargain for Liverpool, Manchester United and Tottenham.