Jurgen Klopp has praised the impact of Joel Matip, though he is not surprised by the Liverpool defender’s early success at Anfield.
After arriving from Schalke on a free transfer during the off-season, Matip has settled in quickly to help Liverpool up to second in the Premier League, just a point adrift of table-topping Chelsea.
Matip has formed a strong partnership with Dejan Lovren in the heart of Liverpool’s defence, which has only conceded 14 goals in 12 matches.
The 25-year-old Cameroon international’s exploits on Merseyside are no surprise to Klopp.
“If I was surprised that would mean I had some negative expectations and it was not like this,” Klopp said ahead of Saturday’s hosting of Sunderland.
“From the first moment when we thought about him and we knew his situation, we knew his readiness to change club and come to Liverpool and all that stuff.
“We were convinced we would do it. We didn’t do it just because he didn’t cost a transfer fee. Not one second. That was only a nice plus. So that’s all.
“We are not surprised. We thought it would work like this and that is why you make transfers.
“All the rest is about the boy. He is very cool. Really cool. He’s not the most talking person, I would say. That all helps.
“He is very confident. In his first few weeks he said: ‘I think I can help the team’ and all that stuff, that was confident. That’s good. That’s what you need. The rest you need is quality and the help of your team-mates.”
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