Michael Owen told BT Sport (17 April) he’s shocked at the level of Joel Matip’s recent performances.

The former Liverpool striker says that Matip has performed better than he had originally expected since stepping in after Joe Gomez’s injury.

Owen also admitted that Gomez will have a struggle to get his place in the starting 11 back from Matip.

Joel Matip's form has surprised Michael Owen

(Photo by Matthias Hangst/Getty Images)

He said: “He’s been brilliant this season, Matip, because I didn’t expect it from him if I’m honest.

“I never really looked at him and thought ‘he’s a Liverpool starter’ in the past.

“But he’s got the shirt and he’s not let it go.”

Owen’s comments mirror the views of many Liverpool fans in recent weeks, as Matip’s form has been impressive.

Joel Matip's form has surprised Michael Owen

(Photo by Simon Stacpoole/Offside/Getty Images)

When Joe Gomez broke his leg against Burnley, the worst was feared, and Matip’s form has been sketchy in the past.

 

However, in the 15 league games Matip has started this season, he has performed exceptionally well.

He has also formed a formidable partnership with Virgil van Dijk and seems to be learning a lot from the big Dutchman.

Matip’s form comes at a good time for Klopp, with Dejan Lovren constantly struggling for fitness or staving off illness.

Joel Matip's form has surprised Michael Owen

(Photo by Southampton FC/Southampton FC via Getty Images)

It will also have reaffirmed Matip’s place in Klopp’s future plans, and will be less likely to sell him this summer.

He will, however, have a fight on his hands to keep his place as Gomez is returning to full fitness.

Gomez made his comeback in a 25 minute cameo in the 4-1 win against Porto, and will be back in Klopp’s plans.

It’s up to Matip to continue his fine form to keep Gomez out of the team.

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