London: Cameroon international defender Joel Matip is out for the rest of the season, dealing a blow to Liverpool on the eve of their Champions League quarter-final first leg clash with Manchester City.
The 26-year-old Germany-born star requires surgery on a thigh he injured during his side's 2-1 victory over Premier League strugglers Crystal Palace on Saturday, the club said.
"Matip was able to complete the full 90 minutes of the fixture, but afterwards medical assessment on the thigh revealed surgery is expected to be required to correct the problem," said a statement on liverpoolfc.com.
"The operation is likely to end the 26-year-old's involvement in the remainder of the 2017-18 season."
Matip's injury adds to manager Jurgen Klopp's defensive woes as England full-back Joe Gomez is on the sidelines with an ankle injury whilst fellow England international Nathaniel Clyne has not played this season due to a back injury.
Klopp is hoping Emre Can will have recovered from a back problem which forced him to miss Germany's international friendlies and the win at Palace.
He is also awaiting an update on Adam Lallana's leg injury after the England midfielder limped off just three minutes after coming on in the second half of the Palace match.