Nigel Reo-Coker reckons Gini Wijnaldum’s importance to Liverpool has been significantly underestimated.
Wijnaldum is virtually ever-present in Jurgen Klopp’s selections: since the start of the 2017/18 season he has made nearly 100 appearances for the Reds across all competitions.
The Dutchman is a multifaceted midfield option, operating as a number six at times and driving forward at others.
And Reo-Coker feels that he deserves more credit for his contribution.
“The pick for me is Wijnaldum, I think he is a fantastic player and he had a tremendous season last season,” Reo-Coker, who played more than 200 Premier League games, told Sky Sports News.
“He is very important to Liverpool, you know he is probably underrated for what he does, for what he brings and contributes to that team.”
It’s been suggested that the Reds need more goals from midfield, and Reo-Coker says Wijnaldum can take on that responsibility.
“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 explained.
“He can get goals and can cause problems in there but if you want the midfield more dynamic you should probably bring Keita in.”
Wijnaldum’s most successful attacking season at Anfield was his first, over the course of which he bagged six goals.
He has managed seven across the two campaigns since, but that reflects a change in how he has been utilised.
Supporters often complain that he fades into anonymity, but as is often the case with midfielders, he often effectively carries out the assigned role without necessarily catching the eye.