Cologne - With the second half of the Bundesliga season approaching, one man who is understandably more desperate than many to hear that first whistle blow at the weekend is FC Schalke 04's .
The Cameroonian could not wait to see the back of 2014, and to put behind him the grimmest chapter in his fledgling career.
The former Chelsea FC coach, who guided one club who wears all blue to UEFA Champions League glory three years ago and is plotting a similar path with Schalke, has been working on a new style of play which may come as a shock to many in the Bundesliga, but it is that precise surprise factor which could come up trumps.
"It’s different," Matip said of the new 3-5-2 formation. "There are a few changes compared to a back four. But at the end of the day, it’s still football. I’m learning the system as I go. I’m flexible and can play across the back three, which I hope means I’ll get plenty of game time." And with that, Matip hopes for a bright - and blue - 2015.