Liverpool Defender’s Contract At Merseyside Extended: A Wise Move For The Reds?

Liverpool's German manager Jurgen Klopp (R) shakes hands with Liverpool's German-born Cameroonian defender Joel Matip (L) at the end of the English Premier League football match between Swansea City and Liverpool at The Liberty Stadium in Swansea, south Wales on October 1, 2016. / AFP / GEOFF CADDICK / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or 'live' services. Online in-match use limited to 75 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club/league/player publications. / (Photo credit should read GEOFF CADDICK/AFP/Getty Images)

According to a recent report by the Athletic, Liverpool centre-back Joel Matip has extended his contract at Anfield by a year after the Reds decided to trigger a clause in his current deal. The same source has mentioned that the Cameroonian defender’s contract was set to expire at the end of this campaign but Jurgen Klopp has decided to keep him at the club for another season.

Matip’s Rich Vein Of Form At Merseyside

Matip has enjoyed the best year of his playing career after he put in some commanding displays at the back alongside Virgil Van Dijk. His incredible contributions saw Liverpool concede the fewest goals in the Premier League last season. He also helped the club win the UEFA Champions League at Madrid earlier this summer which was followed by a UEFA Super Cup triumph last month.

Since sealing a move to England as a free agent in the summer of 2016, Matip has gone on to make 103 appearances for the European champions, scoring five goals while creating one assist on all fronts.

On the defensive end, the Cameroon international averaged 1.8 tackles, 1.5 interceptions and 3.5 clearances per game in the English top-flight last season (stats via whoscored). He has also represented Cameroon in 27 international matches while netting one goal for his country in the process.

What Are The Former Bundesliga Defender’s Best Attributes?

Matip is a powerhouse in defence as he can command his own box with authority and conviction. He is also exceptional at making vital clearances for his side when his teammates need him to step up at the back.

The ex-Schalke defensive ace has flourished playing football alongside Van Dijk and has learnt a lot from the Dutch superstar. The Cameroonian centre-half is also a good defender in 1v1 situations and enjoys playing the ball out from the back.

Matip’s One-Year Extension: Shrewd Move For The Merseyside Giants?

There is no doubt that Matip is currently enjoying his prime years at Liverpool so Klopp would have been foolish to let him leave when he is performing at such a high level. It could turn out to be a wise move for the Reds to keep Matip at Anfield for at least another season as his presence will help the club compete for more trophies in the future.

A 26-year-old sports writer and an aspiring football coach who has road-tripped across the Scottish Highlands, but has never been to Wales. Sucker for cliff-hangers and catchy riffs. Known to be a grunger and not to be a stranger.