Wijnaldum never used to like football; preferred gymnastics instead

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Gini Wijnaldum has explained that he didn’t know much about Liverpool as a kid, because he didn’t know much about football in general!

Instead, he was more interested in gymnastics until his grandma, scared his backflips would result in a broken neck, encouraged him to switch sports!

“When I was young, I didn’t know a lot about Liverpool but that was also because I was not really interested in football,” he told the official website! 


“I was interested in other things like gymnastics. I did backflips, but it was just for fun,” he explains. “I liked to watch gymnastics at the Olympics. It was the thing I liked when I was young, so I did not really care about football – that didn’t come until a later age.

“I preferred gymnastics, but one day my grandma said it was too dangerous and she didn’t want me to do it, so I stopped and turned to football.

“Then, the older I got the more I started to love the game. Now, I’ll love football for the rest of my life.”

Mane: Why I turned down Man United for Liverpool

Like most of our readers, we’ve not been able to think about much else other than football since we were six or seven – so to see Wijnaldum pick up the game on a whim and go on to become a professional is quite depressing!

That being said, if he justifies Jurgen Klopp’s faith, we won’t mind at all.

The Dutchman finalised his £25m transfer last week and could make his Liverpool debut against Chelsea at the Rose Bowl, California, in the early hours of our Thursday morning.

Alongside Wijnaldum, fans may be able to check out Ragnar Klavan for the first time as well, with fellow summer signings Sadio Mane, Loris Karius and Marko Grujic also expected to feature.

Joel Matip is injured and won’t play, and we’re unsure as to whether Alex Manninger will turn out during pre-season!

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