Date: 18th October 2019 at 9:00am
Written by:

OPINION

When Joel Matip picked up a knock in Liverpool’s 1-0 win over Sheffield United, many fans could have been left biting their nails over his potential replacement.

The Cameroon international has been superb alongside Virgil van Dijk, picking up the Premier League Player of the Month award for September, but was forced to miss the game against Leicester City at Anfield before the international break.

Jurgen Klopp made the decision to bring in Dejan Lovren into the back four against the Foxes, and the Croatian was phenomenal in the 2-1 victory after being given the nod by his boss.

That will leave the German with a selection headache going into the massive game at Old Trafford against Manchester United on Sunday.

Matip actually declared himself fully fit for the game against the Red Devils in an interview on the club’s official website on Thursday.

“I’m back in training and I feel good,” he said.

“Of course, if I’m needed, I will be there. Injuries [happen] to a player. Now I’m back, I hope I stay fit and I can focus on the positives.”

It would be very harsh on Lovren if the decision was made to bring Matip straight back into the side after he excelled against Leicester.

The 30-year-old was resolute and stood strong against Brendan Rodgers’ side who came within a whisker of ending the Reds’ winning streak in the Premier League.

Lovren completed two tackles and three interceptions according to WhoScored and managed to keep the relentless Jamie Vardy quiet at Anfield.

The Croatian also completed an impressive seven clearances and made sure that his side were able to keep their eight-point gap at the top of the table despite his lack of action recently.

Lovren fully deserves to keep his place in the side on Sunday and would be desperately unlucky to miss out should Matip be preferred at Old Trafford.