Liverpool latest: Jurgen Klopp issues Ibrahima Konate injury update | Football

The centre-back was withdrawn shortly after half-time in Prague (Picture: Getty)

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp says Ibrahima Konate will need to be assessed before Sunday’s massive clash against Manchester City though fears he may have picked up an injury.

The Merseysiders enjoyed a near-perfect night in the Czech Republic as they swatted aside Sparta Prague 5-1 in the first leg of their Europa League last-16 tie at the Letna Stadion on Thursday evening.

Alexis Mac Allister put the side ahead after just six minutes before Darwin Nunez grabbed a spectacular first-half brace, with Luis Diaz and Dominik Szoboszlai both on the scoresheet in the second half.

But the evening did not go entirely to plan, with Konate pulling up following a quick break from the home side and he had to be withdrawn, with Virgil van Dijk coming on in his place.

Joe Gomez was also subbed off at half-time and while the Englishman’s withdrawal was purely precautionary, Klopp has suggested Liverpool will face a nervy wait to see if Konate can play at the weekend.

Speaking to TNT Sports after the game, Klopp said of the two defenders: ‘With Joe it should be fine. Joe was not planned but it was a possibility, so we did that at half-time.

‘And Ibou we have to see. He said he thought if he keeps going then he could get injured. But we will find something there I’m pretty sure. So let’s see.’

Ibrahima Konate replaced by Liverpool skipper Virgil van Dijk

Konate was replaced by Van Dijk in the 50th minute (Picture: Getty)

Klopp expanded a little more in his post-match press conference, saying of the severity of Konate’s injury: ‘We don’t know. Ibou said to me at that moment, “I thought if I do another sprint then it could be bad”.

‘So he said it should be fine but we don’t know.

‘Joey is fine. We took him off because he played a lot of games, that was rotation. [Konate] said if he carried on it may be a problem so we will see.’

On Nunez’s starring role against Sparta, Klopp continued: ‘A wonderful guy, wonderful boy, He loves to play for this team together with these boys and has quality coming out of his ears to be honest. It’s like strikers are, they score and then they don’t score.

‘Is he at his absolute peak in general? Not now for us. But can he develop? Yes. Is he a threat all the time? Yes. He has the most important attitude a striker needs to have, he missed chances but all strikers are doing but he is not bothered by it and just keeps going.

‘That’s why he now has a nice number of goals, games to come, opportunities to come. When he’s not scoring he for us is incredibly important as he is a constant threat and gives us spaces in areas and options.’

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