Gini Wijnaldum has become an important cog in his time at Liverpool. While he’s not infrequently received criticism over sometimes going missing, these tend not to happen in big games, and certainly less so this past season.
And he’s full of praise for his colleagues, too, talking about how much the side improved over the course of the campaign.
“We have evolved a lot,” Wijnaldum told the official Liverpool website. “You can see it not only with the results but also with the way we were playing. We grew during the season.
”We started really well and we managed to win difficult games where in the past it was quite difficult and if we didn’t play really well we didn’t win the games that were really tough.
”But this season we managed to win those games. We learned a lot. Everyone is a better player than they were before.”
While there is of course a happiness with the collective, if Wijnaldum was ever going to single out one player, it was always going to be his fellow Dutchman Virgil van Dijk, as he goes on to say.
“What has impressed me the most with Virgil is that he’s consistent, he barely makes a mistake,” Wijnaldum added.
”He developed really well at Celtic and Southampton and Liverpool, he developed a lot.
”What also impressed me is that other players play better when he plays; the defenders next to him defend better, the players in front of him play better because when you play and you know he’s behind you, you have a safe feeling.”
It’s great to hear this kind of praise from a player within the squad. There’s clearly a real sense that Liverpool are on a journey and have been improving all the time. But perhaps you’re selling yourself a touch short here, Gini. Give yourself some praise once in a while!