Jurgen Klopp believes it will take time for Ibrahima Konate to fully adapt to Liverpool’s style of play.
But the Reds boss was full of praise for the £36million defender after he kept a clean sheet on his debut in the 3-0 win over Crystal Palace.
Konate was Liverpool’s sole signing in the summer transfer window, with his capture being confirmed as early as May before he officially joined at the start of July.
The France Under-21 international has been made to wait for his chance, however, as he sat out the first five matches of the campaign prior to Saturday’s selection alongside Virgil van Dijk.
Fabinho and Andy Robertson were both also previously made to adapt to the demands of Klopp’s style before they were given extended runs in the side and the Reds boss says it will be the same for Konate.
But Klopp said he was pleased with what he saw from the new centre-back as he helped shut out Palace to send Liverpool to the top of the Premier League.
Asked if Konate had been made to adapt to the system, Klopp said: “Definitely and I think that is very important.
“We all saw what potential the boy has, it is incredible, physically, his technique, his game-understanding, it is all there.
“But when you are a young boy already skilled then you rely sometimes on those skills and the Premier League teaches you harsh lessons sometimes.
“Today against Palace was a good example, Wilf Zaha, Ayew, Edouard, these were proper strikers.
“Maybe it is not so nice when you play a completely new last line but together with Virg and Milly (James Milner, at right-back) it worked really well. Kostas Tsimikas played a superb game too.
“Konate is in a good way, I am really happy. But there is a lot more to come from Ibou, he is still young and yes he has to adapt, they have all had to adapt to the way we play and to the league as well because it is a special league.”
Konate could keep his place in the side when Liverpool are entertained by Norwich City on Tuesday night in the Carabao Cup.Internet Explorer Channel Network