Joel Matip
Matip has instantly become a key figure for Klopp. Getty

Cameroon head coach Hugo Broos will attempt to convince Liverpool defender Joel Matip to end his self-imposed exile from his national team and play at the Africa Cup of Nations.

Matip has enjoyed a superb start to life in English football, having arrived on Merseyside on a free transfer from Schalke in the summer. The 25-year-old immediately found himself leading from the back in Jurgen Klopp's starting XI and had a key role in the club's vibrant start to the 2016-17 Premier League season.

His importance to the Liverpool cause was underlined on Sunday (4 December) against Bournemouth. Matip missed the trip to Dean Court due to an ankle injury, with his side going onto concede four times in a 4-3 defeat to the Cherries, despite leading by two goals with 26 minutes of the match remaining.

With the busy festive period looming, there were positive signs for the Reds on Tuesday as Matip returned to first-team training. However, with the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations now just a month away, Broos plans to speak to the Liverpool star with hopes of him coming back into the international fold.

"When I took over as coach I went to see him in Gelsenkirchen and asked him to return to the team," Broos told Belgium's Voetbal Magazine, the Liverpool Echo report.

"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.

"But in the meantime I've heard that he is now prepared to make a comeback and so I am going to go and see him again."

Liverpool will already lose Sadio Mane in January, with the former Southampton star to represent Senegal in next month's competition in Gabon.

A nightmare scenario for Liverpool could conceivably see Senegal and Cameroon meet in the final of the competition on 5 February, potentially depriving them of two key first-team players at the start of 2017.

Liverpool have a number of key games in January, including their trip to Manchester United and a journey down south to face Chelsea.