SAD NEWS: LIVERPOOL TALENTED KEY PLAYER RULE OUT OF INTERNATIONAL GAMES DUE TO…

Having missed Sunday’s win over Brentford with an issue, France coach Didier Deschamps yesterday confirmed to RMC Sport that Konate would also sit out of the international break.

“He felt a problem with his hamstring,” said the Frenchmen. “He’s had some tests, but it doesn’t matter. It takes a little time not to take any risks.

“It’s an area where he already has an injury. It wasn’t in the player’s best interest or in my best interest. In the best-case scenario, he could only have been available for training on Friday or Saturday.”

In Liverpool terms, it’s possibly good news that Konate gets a little rest now. If he’s able to be back by the weekend, that would also suggest that the 24-year-old may be ready for the trip to face Manchester City on the 25th.

Liverpool walking Konate tightrope

Despite the relatively encouraging news surrounding Konate, it’s quite clear that the centre-back can no longer be relied upon to stay fit.

Having remained injury-free throughout his first season at Anfield, Ibou has now been beset by problems for the last two. We’re only in November, and Konate has had three or four separate issues.

Luckily, Joel Matip has stayed fit and been excellent filling in, while Joe Gomez has done well before also succumbing to an issue at the weekend.

But given that pair’s injury history’s, Liverpool can’t take a chance. January reinforcement is now needed.

If reports are to be believed, then the Reds are taking steps in that direction. Sporting’s Goncalo Inacio seems to be Liverpool’s key target at centre-back and there’s now no excuse not to bring the Portugal international in.

Goncalo Inacio

Photo by Gualter Fatia/Getty Images

With a release clause of around £52m, Liverpool know exactly how much the 22-year-old would cost. It might sound a little on the steep side, but bringing him in or not could be the difference between a title-challenge and a top-four battle.

With just six weeks or so left of the calendar year, the Reds are in a good position. It’s vital that they capitalise on that while they can in January.

Konate may have been fine from here until then, but it feels like only a matter of time before he breaks down again. In that scenario, Liverpool must be prepared. Inacio must be signed.

If the Reds choose to wait, and address their defence next summer, then it could be too late for this season. We’ve been caught out in the past with that kind of tactic. This time, we have to make it count.

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