Gini Wijnaldum had a tough introduction to the Premier League in his inaugural season at Newcastle in 2015-16. Despite scoring 11 goals and adding 5 assists, it wasn’t enough to keep Newcastle in the Premier League.
That summer Gini joined Liverpool where he has blossomed into a superb central midfielder. Klopp has used Wijhaldum in the center of the pitch similarly to where he played when at PSV. While he is not scoring as many goals as he did for Newcastle, he has become an indispensable part of this Liverpool team.
Speaking to the official Liverpool website after their win on Saturday, Georginio Wijnaldum said that he expected the Newcastle game to be a tough one.
Though the league leaders were heavy favorites, they were coming off of a break which saw most of their team on international duty. Jurgen Klopp admitted before the match that due to the internationals he was not able to prepare his side as much as he would have liked.
However, it was not meant to be for Newcastle despite an early lead. Liverpool were just too good and exploited some of Newcastle’s mistakes to cruise to victory.
This is what Gini Wijnaldum had to say about the match:
“We were expecting that it was going to be a really tough game against Newcastle, that’s also what the manager said before.”
“Nowadays in the Premier League, every opponent is difficult so we knew that it was going to be tough. Unfortunately, we were 1-0 behind but I think we did it good, we fixed it quick with the goal of Sadio and then make the 2-1.
“Even in the second half you saw how difficult it was because they created a few chances to score the 2-2, but I think overall we managed to defend them quite well and we scored the 3-1 and we won the game.”
Jurgen Klopp knows the importance of every fixture in the Premier League having fallen just a point short of the title last year. With Manchester City losing to Norwich on Saturday, Liverpool will have to take this mentality into every match as they now control their destiny.
Newcastle started very well against Liverpool, and there’s no shame in losing to the Champions League winners. However, they did make some mistakes and missed a massive chance early in the second half to level the score. So while they played decently enough, they could have done better.
There were little expectations of a result last week. This week, however, is the polar opposite and the lads are expected to get three points against Brighton.