Date: 13th August 2019 at 3:35pm
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Nigel Reo-Coker raved about Liverpool midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum ahead of the Reds’ clash with Chelsea on Wednesday.

The Sky Sports pundit was asked a series of questions about Jurgen Klopp’s side ahead of them facing the Blues for the UEFA SuperCup and was asked to pick the Reds’ best midfielder.

Reo-Coker shared that in his opinion Wijnaldum was the pick of the bunch and claimed that the Dutch midfielder was underrated when it comes to what he brings to the table.

“The pick for me (the pick of the bunch) is Wijnaldum, I think he is a fantastic player and he had a tremendous season last season,” said Reo-Coker on Sky Sports News (11:08am, Tuesday, August 13th).

“He is very important to Liverpool, y’know he is probably underrated for what he does, for what he brings and contributes to that team.

“I think with him, you look at Fabinho, Henderson and Wijnaldum as a three, they have a very solid midfield but if you want to add a bit more attacking flair to that, you give Wijnaldum the freedom to push higher up the pitch as you can see he is able to get goals.

“He can get goals and can cause problems in there but if you want the midfield more dynamic you should probably bring Keita in.”

OPINION

Reo-Coker calling Wijnaldum Liverpool’s best midfielder is debatable, as Fabinho, Jordan Henderson and James Milner can all make a case for why they’re the pick of the bunch,  however, there is no denying the Dutchman’s talent. The 28-year-old wowed for the Reds in his 2018/19 campaign across the 47 appearances he played. Wijnaldum scored five goals, while assisting one, but it wasn’t his work in front of goal that made him stand out. The midfielder made 40 tackles, winning 68% of his tackles, won 131 duels, racked up 21 interceptions and kept Liverpool’s midfield ticking over by making 1,769 across his 35 Premier League appearances (Source: Premier League). Without Wijnaldum doing the less glamorous jobs in the midfield, i.e making sure the Reds held on the ball or won it back when not in possession, Liverpool clearly wouldn’t have been as successful last season. So with that in mind, Reo-Coker was probably right to put the spotlight on the midfielder. However, his remarks were slightly questionable when you consider he thinks Wijnaldum could be more of a force going forward if given a chance, after all he’s only managed 21 goals in 143 Premier League outings in his career.