Georginio Wijnaldum has completed his move to PSG, signing a three-year contract that will reportedly see him earn £160,000/week until June 2024 after the Parisians hijacked his move to Barcelona.
The Dutchman spent five years at Liverpool and was a fantastic servant during his time at the club. He made a total of 237 appearances for the Reds, averaging 47.5 matches per season and was never embroiled in any unnecessary drama.
While some fans are unhappy that he ran down his contract and left the club without a fee being earned, he honoured his five-year deal and worked his socks off during his time at Anfield.
Why PSG and why not Barcelona?
Wijnaldum was seemingly always destined to join Barcelona and while he was also close to joining Bayern Munich, PSG ultimately made him the best financial offer and as he is already in his 30s, he made a financial decision to choose PSG.
Of course, it’s not as though he is moving to the Chinese Super League simply to get a huge payout – Mauricio Pochettino – who was crucial in him moving to Parc des Prince over Camp Nou – has a fantastic side.
I can imagine a lot of players would have been happy to take a smaller contract to have the opportunity to play with Lionel Messi but Wijnaldum will still be playing with Neymar, Kylian Mbappe and Angel Di Maria.
Fabrizio Romano, who was close to the story as it broke, reported that PSG beat Barcelona to Wijnaldum by offering to double his salary – an offer the La Liga side could not match.
The Italian journalist also reports that Mauricio Pochettino was crucial in attracting Gini to Paris with the former Spurs manager calling him “many times.”
What is his Liverpool legacy?
Liverpool fans will always remember Georginio Wijnaldum as the player that helped them launch one of the most memorable European Cup comebacks, with his brace crucial to the 4-0 win over Barcelona in the Champions League semi-final second leg at Anfield.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, his header for his second goal of the night was so reminiscent of the one that Steven Gerrard scored against AC Milan in Istanbul but he had the pleasure of scoring it at Anfield.
I’ve never heard the ground erupt the way it did that night and, with Liverpool going on to win the tournament proper, Wijnaldum’s legacy as a Champions League hero will go down in the club’s rich history.
He then followed that up by playing 37 games in Liverpool’s first-ever Premier League title-winning season.
Wijnaldum’s classy presence on the ball was crucial to the club’s success and this whole journey started by him scoring the winner against Middlesbrough to seal Champions League qualification on the final day of the season in 2017.
In short, he goes down as a legend in my books.