Why Liverpool should prioritise a new deal for Georginio Wijnaldum
As per the report, Wijnaldum’s representatives are waiting for the Reds to open contract negotiations, with the Dutchman entering the final 12 months of his existing £75k-a-week deal at Merseyside. It has been claimed that Jurgen Klopp has no plans to part ways with the 29-year-old, who is understood to be happy at the club and keen to extend his association beyond 2021.
Liverpool had opened talks with Wijnaldum over a new deal earlier in the year before the coronavirus pandemic curtailed all professional football in England (Sky Sports h/t Liverpool Echo).
Born in Rotterdam, Georginio Wijnaldum carved out a massive reputation for himself as one of the best goalscoring midfielders in the Netherlands early in his career. The Dutchman racked up a combined tally of 81 goals and 35 assists in 289 appearances for Feyenoord and PSV Eindhoven before completing a move to Newcastle United in 2015.
Wijnaldum registered 11 goals and 5 assists in 40 appearances for the Magpies during his only season at St. James’ Park, with the Dutchman joining Liverpool in 2016 following Newcastle’s relegation from the Premier League.
The 29-year-old has been converted into a more defensive-minded midfielder by Jurgen Klopp at Liverpool. They have largely relied on their prolific forward line of Firmino, Salah, and Mane to deliver the goods.
That has reduced Wijnaldum’s goal involvement tally to just 19 goals and 16 assists in 189 appearances, but his consistency levels have been truly sensational over the past four seasons at Anfield.
Why Liverpool should offer Wijnaldum a new deal
From outsiders in the top-four race to Champions League winners and Premier League champions for the first time in 30 years, Liverpool have come a long way since Klopp’s appointment back in 2016.
Wijnaldum has been a bonafide witness to Liverpool’s rebuilding project under Klopp’s stewardship. One of the manager’s most trusted lieutenants in the middle of the park, the 29-year-old has established himself as an indispensable component of the German’s gegenpressing philosophy.
The Dutch international made 47 appearances this past season, scoring 6 times, as Liverpool ended their long-standing drought for a domestic title and also lifted the FIFA Club World Cup in Qatar.
At 29, Wijnaldum certainly has a lot of football left in him, and considering his role as an undisputed starter, losing him would leave the Reds with a massive void to fill in their midfield unit.
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Liverpool need to keep hold of their key players if they are to capitalise on their newly-found glory in English football and Georginio Wijnaldum is certainly one of them. With that in mind, it should be an absolute no-brainer for the Reds to offer him a new deal at the earliest.