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Tuesday 21 February 2017

Matip back in Reds training ahead of Hammers clash

Joel Matip: fitness boost
Joel Matip: fitness boost

Liverpool centre back Joel Matip has returned to full training, handing manager Jurgen Klopp a welcome fitness boost ahead of Sunday's Premier League visit of West Ham United.

The 25-year-old Cameroonian sat out last Sunday's Bournemouth game with an ankle injury as Liverpool opened a 3-1 lead only to suffer a stunning defensive collapse and lose 4-3 away.

The club's Senegal winger Sadio Mane, who limped off midway through the second half, also trained normally with the first team squad during Liverpool's break in Barcelona this week.

Meanwhile, Cameroon boss Hugo Broos is still hoping to convince Matip to end his international exile.

The former Schalke centre-back hasn't played for the Indomitable Lions since 2015 and is committed to staying with the Reds rather than taking part in next month's Africa Cup of Nations in Gabon.

However, Broos intends to hold talks with Matip about a potential return to the Cameroon fold. "When I took over as coach I went to see him in Gelsenkirchen and ask him to return to the team," Broos said. "But he said to me 'nothing is organised properly in Cameroon'. I asked him to give me a chance to prove that we could do it better but he was not convinced."

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