Premier League 2018/19: 5 unsung heroes of the season
#4. Georginio Wijnaldum
Liverpool looks absolutely unstoppable this season as they pose a genuine title threat for the first time since their 2014 quest under Brendan Rodgers. And with their prolific strikers Firmino, Mane and Salah in top gear, it is almost impossible to believe that they are going to slip up again this season.
Klopp’s signings over the last couple of years have proved worth their hype and money, especially Brazilian number one Allison and Dutch powerhouse Virgil Van Dijk. With the additions of these world-class players at the back, Liverpool’s defense has finally restored its unassailability, something that the fans haven’t witnessed since the Carragher days.
Though Klopp has assembled a formidable front-three and a solid back four, the only concern he would have in this new-age Liverpool side is their mediocre midfield options.
Fabinho and Keita were big-money signings who did exceedingly well at Monaco and Leipzig respectively but are yet to take the Premier League by storm. Adam Lallana and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain been injured for the majority of the season while James Milner and Jordan Henderson lack that creative spark. In such a scenario, it was essential for the Reds to have someone like Gini Wijnaldum in their midfield: someone who has an assured defensive presence, an attacking instinct and a knack for goals.
The Dutchman has impressed with his consistency this season. He was touted to be a benchwarmer after the arrivals of Keita and Fabinho but has instead become his German manager’s go-to guy. Since his debut in 2015, only Coutinho (13) has more assists than Wijnaldum (11) from midfield.
People tend to focus on the fact that Liverpool’s title credentials are only dependent on their star-studded front-three of Salah, Mane, and Firmino or their resolute backbone of Van Dijk and Allison. However, Wijdnaldum has proven to be the glue that holds it all together.