Joel Matip reveals Messi meetup following Anfield comeback
Liverpool’s comeback against Barcelona is one of the club’s greatest European nights. With two of our vaunted front three ruled out, the Reds dug deep to come back from a three-goal handicap to inflict a humiliating loss on the Catalans.
Every player and fan has a story to tell. This is Joel Matip’s turn. The Cameroonian was at the heart of an impressive defensive performance that kept the Cules at bay.
According to 11Freunde (h/t Liverpool Echo), he came face to face against his nemesis on the night- Lionel Messi. A chance encounter at the drug test, Matip missed out on his team’s celebrations after that famous victory.
The miracle of Anfield!
Divock Origi gave the Reds an early lead before Gini Wijnaldum came off the bench to draw his side level in six pulsating minutes. A cheeky Trent Alexander-Arnold corner dealt the Catalans a death blow much to the horror of Messi and co.
The full-time whistle sparked mad celebrations unseen at Anfield for a long time. The video of the players, arm in arm singing ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ along with the fans is a sight that will live long in every fan’s memory.
As the Reds continued to celebrate, Matip was asked to undergo a routine drug test. It just so happened that he had to do it with the world’s best player. Speaking about the incident, Matip revealed that he was on cloud nine as he walked into a dejected Barcelona number 10.
“Everyone is celebrating and I’m sitting in a cubicle with Messi!”
The Cameroonian described the meeting akin to a coffee party, given the close proximity the players were in. It wasn’t mentioned if the Barcelona star said anything. If he didn’t, then it would be the second time that night that the Cameroonian had kept Messi quiet.
Matip reminisced fondly about singing the club’s anthem alongside the fans. He called it one of the most beautiful moments of his career, akin to his professional debut for Schalke.
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Liverpool went on to lift their sixth European Cup in the final. Matip once again was in the thick of the action as he provided the assist for Divock Origi’s late goal. The Belgian’s strike put the tie beyond doubt as the Reds brought the curtains down on an incredible campaign.