Joel Matip has risen to be Cameroon’s highest paid player, beating Samuel Eto’o Fils. Could this be affecting his relationship with his country? He has decided he wants to focus on Liverpool, and therefore will not play during the African Cup of Nations.

About two weeks back, Joel Matip and his elder brother refused coming to play for the CAF qualifiers game against Gambia. The coach Hugo Broos said he called Joel especially 15 times, but he ignored his calls and text messages.

Joel Matip has revealed he wants to focus on the start of his career with Liverpool, that’s why he will not be part of the AFCON games. He doesn’t want to compromise his first season in the Premier League for anything.

“I would say at the moment I will be concentrating on Liverpool,” Matip told the Daily Telegraph. It is a long time until January so you never know, but that is the idea.

“Last year I had injury problems. The extra games and travelling were going to make it harder for me. I had to listen to my body and it told me that the international week was the right time to have a break.

“I spoke with the Cameroon manager and he was not happy, but I have to do what is right to be 100 percent and make sure I am not injured again, especially at an important time in my career starting at Liverpool.”

It’s concluded he will not be part of the games, but this could be a great opportunity for other local players. They will have the chance to be a part of the games and put themselves out there. Moreover, the image of the national team doesn’t really depend on those big guns. We still believe Hugo Broos can do a great job with the team, and redeem the name and face of the Indomitable Lions, with the few willing to.

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