Report: 100k-a-week Liverpool player now set to start against Aston Villa on Boxing Day
After years of challenging for the league title, the Reds main aim this season will be qualifying for the Champions League.
Nearly every member of Liverpool’s squad has now been eliminated from the World Cup.
Only centre-back Ibrahima Konate remains, as his France side prepare to take on Morocco tonight.
Regardless of whether Les Bleus win or not, the French will still play another match this weekend.
It’s unlikely therefore that Klopp will want to throw Konate straight back into action.
Every other member of the squad has been given some time off after leaving Qatar, and Konate is unlikely to be any different.
The Athletic suggest he’ll definitely miss out on their Carabao Cup tie on the 22nd, but could be involved on Boxing Day.
The Cameroonian defender looks to have finally got over his injury issues, and is now an important option for Klopp.
Matip set to start against Aston Villa
The £100,000-a-week centre-back has been one of Klopp’s most frustrating players in recent years.
When fit, Matip is Virgil van Dijk’s first-choice partner at the back, and has been fantastic for Liverpool.
However, too often Matip is struggling with fitness issues, and has missed over 100 matches since signing from Schalke.
This season, Matip has managed just four league appearances, but is now getting set to start again.
The 31-year-old played 45 minutes against AC Milan on Sunday, and Klopp was pleased with his return.
“Very important, absolutely very important. Yeah, so far he did pretty much everything in training,” Klopp said.
“Looked good today, 45 minutes was again what we were allowed to use him. That’s what we did. That’s good.”
He’s looked good in the appearances he has made this season, and Klopp will hope he’s the catalyst to improving their season.
It’s even been claimed that the ‘underrated’ defender was better than Van Dijk last season.
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