A win in the league is a win in the league, and after so long without an outright one, getting one against even a promoted side can be a relief. Liverpool defeated Huddersfield when they came to visit Anfield on Saturday, despite a dismal first half performance and more than a couple changes to the lineup due to injuries. The Reds were not only without Sadio Mane and Adam Lallana (as expected), but Philippe Coutinho and Dejan Lovren both picked up injuries in the run up to the game - in Lovren’s case literally warming up before kick-off. It took until after the half to make some sort of marker on the match, but Liverpool ensured an important win, thanks in no small part to Georginio Wijnaldum.
“Yeah of course, especially after what happened last week. We had to react,” Wijnaldum told the club website, when asked whether Saturday’s result represented a big win.
“It was a tough first half - we didn't find the spaces, didn't create a lot of chances, so it was really tough. But in the second half, we did what we had to do, created more chances, outplayed them with our football and scored three goals.
“It's always a good feeling to score a goal, especially a beautiful goal at the Kop end. It was also my first of the season so I hope more will follow, but it's always nice to score a goal.”
The Reds did have a chance to score in the first half, as they were awarded a penalty, but Mohamed Salah’s effort was saved by Huddersfield ‘keeper Jonas Lossl just before the halftime whistle. Any other time a supporter might think that’s just another blow to keep the Reds down but Wijnaldum insisted this wasn’t the case.
“Everyone can miss a penalty, it happens in football. It's not sure that you'll score if you get a penalty, so it can happen,” the midfielder said.
“At half-time the manager told us to keep playing football, make more runs behind their defence, but he said the most important thing was to stay calm and play football and not get frustrated that they make the spaces really small.
“That's what we did, we were concentrated when we had the chances and we scored them.”
Wijnaldum himself scored the third goal of the day at 75 minutes, and his first of the season, so there’s lots to be positive about on his end.