Why Ibrahima Konate would be a fantastic signing for Tottenham
Since Mauricio Pochettino came to the helm in north London, Tottenham have seemingly gone from strength to strength, establishing themselves as Champions League regulars.
They reached the Champions League final in Madrid on June 1 where they lost 2-0 to Liverpool following a rollercoaster run which nearly ended in the group stages.
Tottenham were expected to kick on and realistically challenge for the Premier League title this season. However, that hasn’t been the case and things have gone from bad to worse for Spurs last week as they were dumped out of the Carabao Cup by Colchester United.
The League Two side successfully outwitted Pochettino’s men during 90 minutes before winning the penalty shoot-out.
While Spurs bounced back at the weekend with a 2-1 victory over Southampton in the Premier League, Pochettino needs more quality and depth in his squad to challenge for trophies. One area the Argentinean tactician should prioritise addressing in January is his defence.
The north London side have uncharacteristically looked shaky at the back this season, with Jan Vertonghen particularly showing signs of struggles with the pace and intensity of the Premier League.
Moreover, Vertonghen is out of contract at the end of the season and so is his Belgian compatriot, Toby Alderweireld. And it looks very likely the partnership of Alderweireld and Vertonghen in defence could well be over.
Davinson Sanchez’s development has stalled considerably while Juan Foyth is still just 21 but currently out injured. Therefore, a young central defender is an absolute must for Spurs and Pochettino must make a move for RB Leipzig’s Ibrahima Konate.
Ibrahima Konate, 20, who was linked with Tottenham earlier this year, is rated among the best young centre-backs alongside his compatriot and RB Leipzig teammate Dayot Upamecano. He had his breakthrough last season and is now a regular in Leipzig defence.
Standing at 6ft 4inches with a towering stature, Konate has the perfect height for a centre-back. He is not only adept at beating his offensive counterparts to the aerial balls but also knows how to use his physicality to good effect, keeping the opposition at bay with his power and strength.
He can break lines with his passing and also reads the game superbly thanks to his excellent in-game intelligence.
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The young Frenchman also is quite agile for a player of his size and in all honesty has shown a lot of composure and maturity on the pitch that belies his tender years. It would be fair to say that the 20-year-old defender is ready to take the next big step in his career.
Konate is attractive for a number of reasons. As a young, competent ball-playing centre-half, he has a bright future and is the perfect kind of defender with which Pochettino likes to work. Hence, Spurs should plot a January swoop for the Paris-born defender.