Ibrahima Konaté is certainly one of the possibilities to reinforce Chelsea’s backline in the summer transfer window, and while there were reports that Liverpool were close to completing a transfer for the France U21 international, the deal is not close to completion by any means.
This could provide an opportunity for other clubs to steal a march on the Reds, with Konaté’s release clause allowing potential suitors to skip having to negotiate with Leipzig and start talks directly with the player. And that release clause may not even be as high as previously reported.
According to Christian Falk, Konaté could be available for almost €10m less than previously mooted, with his actual release clause somewhere in the region of €32-34m. According to the Times, Leipzig expect the release clause to be paid in one go instead of multiple installments, which is understandable considering the low amount and certainly not impossible for a team like Chelsea.
Konaté’s cheap release clause — just a few million more than Milan’s €28m buy-option on Tomori, for example — would provide an opportunity for the Blues to spend frugally on a centre back, enabling us to go all-out for the much more expensive Erling Braut Haaland as our marquee centre forward signing (although, Konaté’s injury history could be a source of concern).