We probably don’t realise how crucial this news actually is…
But it’s big and will hopefully help us begin 2017 how we started the campaign – flying.
Joel Matip has told Liverpool that he won’t be ending his international hiatus and joining Cameroon for the African Cup of Nations in January, reports the Guardian.
Rumours suggested the 26-year-old centre-back, who arrived from Schalke on a free transfer this summer, would rejoin the Indomitable Lions for the AFCON, but from a Liverpool perspective, Matip has thankfully put these to bed.
This term, he’s been our best defender by an enormous distance and his absence has been sorely missed. In the three matches Matip hasn’t played, we’ve conceded nine goals and lost twice. In the 11 he has, we’ve conceded nine and lost none.
We’re already without Sadio Mane for potentially seven games due to Senegal’s AFCON involvement, but we’re not sure we could cope without the rock at the heart of our backline as well.
Barring injury, Matip will be a cornerstone of our side and one of the first names on the team-sheet from now until the summer. Fantastic.