Former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher has hailed Reds’ star Ibrahima Konate and claims that he “can’t see” how the Frenchman can be deprived of a starting berth in the World Cup final.
The reigning world champions booked their place in their second-consecutive showpiece by beating surprise package Morocco 2-0. They will take on South American side Argentina, with Didier Deschamps’ men attempting to become the first side since Brazil in 1962 to successfully defend the World Cup.
Ahead of the showdown at the Lusail Stadium, the French boss has a number of decisions to make regarding his starting XI. Jamie Carragher is under no illusions over who he thinks should be starting for Les Bleus alongside the likes of Kylian Mbappe, Hugo Lloris and more.
Having watched the semi-final showdown with Morocco, he was greatly impressed with the performance of Liverpool star Konate and has appealed for him to be handed a starting role against Argentina. Taking to Twitter, he wrote: “The French MOM was @IbrahimaKonate_ I can’t see how he can be left out of the starting eleven in the final!”
Konate, 23, has made four appearances for France during the World Cup with his start against Morocco being his first outing at the tournament since his appearance in the final group game against Tunisia. Deschamps’ men were on the losing side in the game with the former RB Leipzig man having been left on the bench for the following two matches.
He was only called upon against Morocco with defensive colleague Dayot Upamecano having been ruled out due to illness. The defender was preferred to Arsenal ’s William Saliba.
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Whilst Konate caught the eye for his country as they reached the World Cup final, he was unfortunate to miss out on the post-match celebrations. Konate and fellow centre-back Jules Kounde were pulled in for doping tests shortly after the final whistle.
Filming behind the scenes, he said: "We can't even celebrate," to which Kounde replied: "It sucks.”
Celebrations continued in the French dressing room during the pair’s absence with Didier Deschamps having hailed his players for sealing their place in the final under what were testing circumstances.
Speaking after the victory over Morocco, he said: “I’m always proud when I achieve a result like this and it is great to have got through to the final, it wasn’t an easy victory.
“We showed our quality and experience and team spirit. We had to dig deep, even in the challenging moments in the match and as coach I’m very proud and pleased with my players.
“I don’t really think about myself but of course I appreciate we have had this success and I’m pleased for them.”