Liverpool's Joel Matip: My international career with Cameroon 'is now finished'

Joel Matip has told The Times that he considers his international career with Cameroon to be over.

Matip, 25, was one of seven Cameroon players who rejected the chance to compete at the recent African Nations Cup with the eventual winners, while the Cameroon FA argued that they should not be allowed to play for their clubs during the tournament.

The centre-half was forced to miss two Liverpool games as a result and now says he has no plans to end his international exile.

"It was not always easy for me, but I hope this chapter is now finished," Matip said. "I did not understand what was going on around me. I only wanted to stay here at Liverpool and play. In the last two years after the World Cup [in 2014], I was only on international duty one time.

"I tried to play and represent my country, do my best and achieve something but all the surrounding things were not the best.

"I always tried it and tried it. I spoke to the old coach a lot and he always tried to change some things. I said, 'OK, I will try it again.'

"I tried it again and again and, at one moment, you have to say it is enough. You cannot keep saying, 'Maybe next time it will get better, it will get better.'

"It is Africa and you can never compare it to European things. I never compared it.

"I am not talking about the hotel or having the perfect pitch. It is not that I want something special. But it would have been good if all the people only thought the most important thing was to win something and to achieve."

Matip has impressed at Liverpool since moving from Schalke on a free transfer in the summer, making 22 appearances for the side in total this season.