Liverpool defender Joel Matip has refuted claims that he could be considering his future at Anfield ahead of Sunday’s Merseyside derby.
Joe Gomez, Virgil van Dijk and Dejan Lovren are Jurgen Klopp’s preferred centre-backs this campaign with Matip starting only three games for the Reds in all competitions.
The Cameroon international will have only one year remaining on his contract come the end of the season and there have been strong rumours that he could leave in January.
However, Matip claims that those reports are wide of the mark as he is determined to force his way into Liverpool’s starting XI.
“I only concentrate now on the season on Liverpool and there’s nothing else in my mind,” Matip told the Evening Standard. “Everything else would only distract me.
“I’ve got to wait for my opportunity, I have to work hard – this is the life of a player.
“I try to be in the best form I can be and to be ready if I had to be.”
As for his thoughts on the game against Everton this weekend, Matip added: “It’s something special for the players, for the people of the town, because with two big clubs like Everton and Liverpool in one town that’s something special.
“For all the supporters this is a special game. If you are in the stadium then you already feel it’s something different.
“You see the atmosphere and then you know that the next 90 minutes it will be [difficult]. Every game is a fight but this will be a massive fight.
“[If you lose] nobody wants to talk to an Everton fan the next day. I think it means a lot to all the people and to us.”
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