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Liverpool could have one of the strongest defensive lines in the world next season as players return from injury and transfers edge closer.
The Reds are understood to be just 48 hours away from completing the signing of Ibrahima Konate from RB Leipzig.
Anfield bosses have decided to trigger the £36m release clause in the Frenchman's contract, and get a deal over the line before the U21 European Championships get underway.
Meanwhile, Virgil van Dijk is expected to be fit in time for pre-season, and will be a very welcome addition, along with Joe Gomez and Joel Matip, who have both been missing for some time now.
So here are four different ways Jurgen Klopp could line up defensively next season.
Strongest back four
Liverpool's strongest possible back four is a defensive line any side in the world would probably like to have.
With Andy Robertson and Trent Alexander-Arnold bombing down the wings safe in the knowledge they can trust the centre-halves, they should be back to their best.
A fit-again Van Dijk will be hoping to find some form straight off the bat, and alongside the fresh-faced Konate, it'll be hard to get past those two man mountains.
Moving Alexander-Arnold into midfield
As has been discussed on several occasions, Alexander-Arnold would make a wonderful midfielder, and it's possible that he could eventually make that move this season.
With Van Dijk and Konate holding down the fort through the middle, Joe Gomez could revert back to right-back, where he regularly played as a youngster, while Neco Williams will also be hoping for more game time.
Klopp has seemed hesitant to make the move in the past, but the German should feel safer in the knowledge that there is more cover at the back to allow Alexander-Arnold to play a more advanced role.
When Liverpool are at their peak, Robertson and Alexander-Arnold basically play as wing-backs anyway.
But with some decent defensive cover, Klopp may opt to play them even higher up, probably allowing Gomez and Konate to cover them, while Van Dijk operates predominantly through the centre.
With the ever-reliable Fabinho sitting in front of the centre-halves as well, the Reds should have more than enough bodies at the back to allow Robertson and Alexander-Arnold to move basically into wide midfielders, which has worked so well for Chelsea.
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Joel Matip is likely to drop down to fourth choice at centre-back, or maybe even fifth, with Nat Phillips seriously impressing towards the end of the season.
The pair would certainly line up in a rotated side, and no doubt do a good job, if both are kept on this summer.
Neco Williams should be the right-back in the easier cup games, while Kostas Tsimikas will once agin play second fiddle to Robertson.
- Jurgen Klopp
- Virgil van Dijk
- Liverpool FC
- Transfer news
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