Gary Neville has lauded Liverpool midfielder Gini Wijnaldum as the most underrated player currently in the Premier League.
Klopp and Neville on Wijnaldum
Wijnaldum, 29, is in his fifth season as a Liverpool player, with his current Anfield contract due to expire at the end of the season.
The Dutchman has featured more frequently than any other Liverpool player this season – excluding Andy Robertson.
He is an irreplaceable cog in a systematic approach that very-much sees his endeavours overlooked, with his role in the team predominantly focussed on bringing the best out of those around him.
Jurgen Klopp even said on Wednesday afternoon that Wijnaldum had been Liverpool’s most consistent player this term during his press conference.
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“I think the most consistent player this season probably is Gini Wijnaldum,” he said. “Long may it continue and he played the No.6 and pretty much all the positions and all these kind of things.”
And the compliments kept pouring through, as former Manchester United captain Neville claimed that Wijnaldum was the most underrated player in the Premier League.
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With all the glowing referrals from some of the most iconic figures in football, it’s only natural that we elude to the ongoing contractual conundrum between Wijnaldum and Liverpool.
Both parties are still no closer to reaching a compromise over the former Newcastle man’s future. According to the Italian publication, FC Inter News, Wijnaldum and his agent are after a significant pay-rise.
Specifically, both the agent and player are after a four-year contract with a pay-packet of £165,000-a-week. That would be quite the significant influx on his pre-existing deal that sees Wijnaldum take home £75,000-a-week per Spotrac.
In fact, that would see Wijnaldum earn more than both Andy Robertson and Sadio Mane combined. It’s unlikely, then, that Liverpool would be open to agreeing on such an extension.
Wijnaldum is 30, after all, and we don’t imagine he will be in the starting XI when everyone is fit and avaialble.
Still, this doesn’t dispute how invaluable he has been and still is to this Liverpool contingent. While Klopp clearly values the Reds No.5, it may not be enough to save Wijnaldum’s long-term prospects at Anfield.