Liverpool have confirmed the impending departure of long-serving defender Joel Matip.

The centre-back joined Liverpool as one of Jurgen Klopp's first signings back in 2016, and over an eight-year spell, has played a key role in the Reds' success.

Matip, 32, is out of contract at the end of the season, having not featured since December due to a serious knee injury.

On Friday, the club confirmed the former Schalke defender would be following Klopp in leaving Anfield.

Speaking to Liverpool's official club channels, Matip said: "It has been eight wonderful years here in Liverpool.

"I was allowed to be part of an exciting history with a great coach and an astonishing team in an extraordinary club. We have achieved great titles and have the best fans in the world.

"I am full of gratitude for the wonderful time I was able to experience with these unique people supporting the club and the fans who love Liverpool.

"My wife and I have felt welcomed and supported from day one and together with the kids we had the best imaginable time here. We will always keep it in special memories."

Klopp added: "In all the years that I have been involved in football, I am not sure I have come across too many players who are more loved than Joel.

"I'm not even sure it would be possible to say anything bad about him."

Injuries have curtailed Matip's recent seasons, with the former Cameroon international managing just 24 Premier League appearances across the last two campaigns.

He leaves Liverpool having won one league title, the Champions League, the FA Cup, EFL Cup, Community Shield and Super Cup.

Matip will get the chance to say goodbye to the Anfield faithful when Liverpool face Wolves in Klopp's final game on Sunday.