Ibrahima Konate has claimed that Liverpool teammate Thiago Alcantara was key to his goal scoring form from corners last season.
Konate was speaking in a press conference via RMC Sport transcribed by Liverpool Echo. During the questioning, the 23-year-old shared that he was discussing corners with Thiago when the midfielder offered some advice.
“Before I didn’t believe in myself enough on corners,” he said. “Thiago Alcantara told me to have confidence because I was tall. It worked for me.”
It certainly did. The Frenchman went on a hot-streak for Liverpool in April, scoring three times in three big games.
Liverpool always a threat from corners
Those three goals in the FA Cup and Champions League were Konate’s only goals of the season.
Although a decent haul, the way he attacked the ball to score against Manchester City and Benfica suggests he will score many more in future.
Both of his regular centre-back partners, Joel Matip and Virgil Van Dijk, also scored three each in 2021/22. With the quality of deliveries from the likes of Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson, they’ll always get chances.
According to premierleague.com, only City were awarded more corners than Liverpool last season. It clearly pays off to have players like Konate trying to get on the end of them.
Konate waiting for his chance for France
Konate was speaking ahead of France’s Nations League game against Austria on Friday. Ibou has earned his first call-up to the French squad and was on the bench for Monday’s 1-1 draw with Croatia.
With another game to play against Croatia on Monday, it’s hopeful that he’ll get a chance to impress at least once.
The World Cup in November may come too soon for Konate, but if he can make a good impression there’s a chance he could be on the plane to Qatar.
After an imperious showing in the Champions League final for Liverpool, he will likely start next season as Jurgen Klopp’s preferred partner for Virgil Van Dijk.
Continue his good form, and he’ll certainly put a question in manager Didier Deschamps’ head.