Rio Ferdinand names Liverpool star who will be 'fuming' with Jurgen Klopp after Villarreal

Rio Ferdinand names Liverpool star who will be ‘fuming’ with Jurgen Klopp after Villarreal

Rio Ferdinand has claimed he would be “fucking” if he were Joel Matip after the defender was named to the bench for Liverpool’s Champions League semi-final against Villarreal.

Jurgen Klopp called three changes from the side that beat Everton in the Merseyside derby this weekend. Jordan Henderson replaced Naby Keita in midfield, while Luis Diaz replaced Diogo Jota on the Liverpool frontline.

However, it was the decision to choose Ibrahima Konate before Joel Matip that led to a response from Ferdinand † Speaking on BT Sport, the former Manchester United defender insisted he would not be happy with Klopp if he were overlooked for such a crucial clash after an impressive campaign.

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“If I’m Joel Matip, I’m smoking,” Ferdinand said. “He’s been exceptional all season and we’re talking about being the best defender in form in the league, he’d be there for a shout after (Virgil) Van Dijk, so yeah, set pieces should be a big thing for his squad selection This evening.”

Konate is regularly trusted by the Liverpool boss in the Champions League, having started six of the club’s last seven games in the competition. The defender also showed his goal threat in the quarter-final with Benfica, scoring in every leg as Liverpool progressed to the last four.

Former Reds striker and Ferdinand’s fellow BT pundit Peter Crouch agreed that Konate’s attacking presence at set pieces could have been a factor in Klopp’s squad selection. Despite Ferdinand’s protests, the former England defender admitted that the club’s ability to call on Konate demonstrated the strength of Liverpool’s squad.

“I think the most impressive thing for me is the way he’s been able to use his team,” he continued. “You just shake the back at a certain point, and those players come in and influence the team.

“They play a big part in that, (Ibrahima) Konate is a good example of that. He’s come in and scored goal after goal, and as a manager it’s a dream scenario at the business end of the season.”

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