Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has told the club's official website that he is 'very happy to sign 'top-class' Joel Matip from Schalke.
The Reds were quiet in January, but have made a big move by securing the signature of Cameroon international Matip this week.
The 24-year-old defender has been with Schalke since the age of nine, but will be leaving the Veltins Arena upon the expiration of his contract this summer.
Matip has signed a pre-contract agreement with Liverpool, meaning he will arrive at Anfield at the end of the season, giving Reds boss Klopp another option in his defence, or even in holding midfield if needed.
It's an interesting situation for both Klopp and Matip. Whilst Klopp was managing Bundesliga giants Borussia Dortmund, Matip was a key player for their fierce rivals Schalke, meaning Klopp has seen plenty of Matip as an opponent - and now he will be managing him from next season.
Now, speaking to the club's official website, Liverpool boss Klopp has admitted that he is very happy to have signed Matip, especially on a free transfer, highlighting his ability to score goals even as a defender.
Klopp also admitted that, even before taking the Liverpool job back in October, he thought about signing Matip for his next club - and that idea has now come to fruition, much to the German manager's delight.
"I am very happy. Everybody who knows him would have been interested," said Klopp. "Maybe he’s not the most famous player in England, but he’s 24 and has played about 200 Bundesliga games for Schalke. He is a top-class centre-half, very young but experienced. You don’t have that too often. To be honest, when I had my break I thought for the next club, I should think about Joel, if there was a need."
"He’s quick, he’s flexible in his movements and good in technical things. He has played in different systems, with four or three defenders. He scores goals, four or five per season minimum. He is good in the one-on-one and quick. It’s a package," he added.
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