July 22, 2022
Jurgen Klopp’s unstoppable debut for the Champions League final is ‘incredible’ Liverpool ace |  Soccer |  sport

Jurgen Klopp will have a tough decision to make as he prepares his squad selection for the Champions League final. Ibrahima Konate has been a revelation for Liverpool in Europe this season, but Joel Matip will be hard to ignore when it comes to choosing Virgil van Dijk’s partner in defense in Paris.

The Champions League final is a game every player dreams of attending, but Klopp will have a tough selection when it comes to deciding between Konaté and Matip in defence. Konaté, 22, has made seven Champions League appearances this campaign since he started in all of them.

The Reds have conceded just seven goals in those seven games, impressive stats for a new signing. However, despite these stats, Matip could be the obvious choice for Klopp. The German manager hinted as much earlier in the season when he hailed ‘incredible’ Matip.

Klopp said earlier this season: “Listen, I can’t help people who don’t see the quality of Joel Matip. It’s true, he’s been a bit unlucky in the past with an injury here and there – maybe -be not always the hardest things but he’s a big boy, big player, big and he can sometimes seem a little pissed off or whatever But he’s an amazing player, he’s always been an amazing player ever since he joined us at least. So that’s really good.

You can see how impactful Jordan Henderson, James Milner and, more recently, Luis Diaz are in the side just to get the job done. The Reds simply struggled with Henderson, one of their key leaders who has proven time and time again that he can make a difference. And while Konate has shown potential at 22, offers more pace than Matip and is also physically better in aerial duels, Klopp will have to look to consider experience against those factors, which has paid off at several times before.

And before a final where there is no room for error, Matip crosses the line. His successful career at the Reds saw him help Klopp to 106 wins in 162 appearances for the Anfield side in all competitions. They have lost just 19 times and drawn 37. His leadership in defense alongside another great player in van Dijk will be rewarded.

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