Ibrahima Konaté: Liverpool fans buzzing to see signing alongside Van Dijk after Mainz win

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Liverpool fans are starting to get their first glimpse of Ibrahima Konaté in the famous red jersey.

Konate arrives at Anfield

Kopites were plagued with problems at centre-back throughout the 2020/21 campaign with Joe Gomez and Virgil van Dijk missing the majority of the season with serious injuries.

Both players are set to return to the Reds fold over the course of the summer, but the club has learnt from its ill-fated decision not to replace Dejan Lovren nonetheless.

And that comes in the form of acquiring Konate from RB Leipzig, activating his £36 million release clause to give the Anfield faithful a little more security when it comes to the back line.

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Konate during pre-season

However, with both Gomez and Van Dijk returning to fitness, there are perhaps a few questions to answer regarding how Jurgen Klopp will configure his centre-back partnership this season.

And Konate has made a pretty convincing argument for himself thus far with the Frenchman having now appeared twice for his new employers during their pre-season tour of Austria.

The 22-year-old made his Liverpool bow with 90 minutes of action during the 1-1 draw with Stuttgart and was once again entrusted with a starting place for the 1-0 win over Mainz on Friday evening.

The most recent friendly appearance, in particular, has attracted great praise from Liverpool fans who seem incredibly excited about the prospect of Konate forming a partnership with Van Dijk.

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Konate's highlights vs Mainz

Konate looked unerringly assured against his former Bundesliga foes, stroking the ball across the back-line and not being afraid to galavant forward a la Harry Maguire or Antonio Rudiger.

Marry that to some ambitious passes up the pitch as well as moments of no-nonsense defending to boot and it's clear to see why Liverpool fans were so impressed by another 46 minutes from Konate.

And there is no better way to see why Kopites are getting excited about Konate than by checking out his individual highlights - courtesy of YouTuber 'SVMM' - down below:

Pretty dominant stuff, I'm sure you'll agree and something that fans particularly enjoyed was the Frenchman's power of recovery, which can be appreciated in these two moments against Mainz:

Reminding fans of Van Dijk

Now, that's all well and good, but what's the talk of the town? Well, remarkably, there are more than a few Liverpool fans who actually see similarities between Konate and Van Dijk's playing style.

No, they are no proclaiming Konate as the next Ballon d'Or-contending defender of his age but rather, that his fantastic turn of pace and confidence on the ball reminded them of Van Dijk.

But don't just take our word for it, check out the reaction across YouTube, Reddit and Twitter down below:

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A promising start

If you're reminding people of Van Dijk in terms of your playing style, then you're clearly doing something right and it certainly looks as though Konate has got all the tools to succeed at Anfield.

Naturally, it would be silly to get too far ahead of ourselves when Konate was only playing in a pre-season friendly, but he can only beat what's in front of him and he's barely put a foot wrong so far.

And when the time comes for the 22-year-old to make his Premier League bow, he can rest assured that he couldn't possibly wish for a better centre-back partner to stand beside him than Van Dijk.

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