Joel Matip told Liverpool’s official website why he tries to break the lines with his passing and strong runs from deep.
The Cameroonian has been a fan favourite during the Reds title bid this season. Previously a marginalised figure, Matip has improved tenfold and has shown his class.
Matip said: “We have the ball quite often and I try to help my teammates and try to do something for the team to create something. I really enjoy it. I think it’s not bad if you enjoy the way you play.
“When I was young I tried to play from the back. I think that’s just the way I am, the way I play. Sometimes it helps and I hope that it will help our team.
The best of Joel Matip playing out from the back – 18/19 pic.twitter.com/HsYGWZJ6ZQ
— Harry (@HS_10Ftbol) April 22, 2019
“Maybe I should not do it every few minutes but I think he [Klopp] trusts me. If I step in and the risk is not too high and I can help the team then it’s helpful.”
Matip can look ungainly and uncoordinated at first glance but the 27-year-old is actually very good on the ball and has helped cover for Joe Gomez.
The English defender’s strong passing game was key earlier in the season to break the lines in order to bypass opposition midfields entirely.
Gomez might be the better ballplayer but that’s not a criticism of Matip. The Cameroonian has done superbly in his younger teammate’s place this season.
Hopefully, he will be handed a new contract before the start of next season.
The former Schalke defender has done enough to warrant a few extra years at the club as a squad player.
With several huge games remaining this season, Matip’s strong defending and proactive style on the ball could be crucial in Liverpool winning silverware.
Three massive Premier League games await while Matip will start in his first Champions League semifinal against Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi.
A win will see him book a place in the final for Liverpool.