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Georginio Wijnaldum

Georginio Gregion Emile Wijnaldum (Dutch pronunciation: [ɟɔrˈɟiɲoː ʋɛiˈnɑldʏm]; born 11 November 1990) is a Dutch professional footballer who plays as a midfielder for Premier League club Liverpool and the Netherlands national team.

Georginio Wijnaldum
20160604 AUT NED 8839.jpg
Wijnaldum with Netherlands in 2016
Personal information
Full name Georginio Gregion Emile Wijnaldum[1]
Date of birth (1990-11-11) 11 November 1990 (age 29)
Place of birth Rotterdam, Netherlands
Height 1.75 m (5 ft 9 in)[2]
Playing position Midfielder
Club information
Current team
Liverpool
Number 5
Youth career
1997–2004 Sparta Rotterdam
2004–2007 Feyenoord
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2007–2011 Feyenoord 111 (23)
2011–2015 PSV 109 (40)
2015–2016 Newcastle United 38 (11)
2016– Liverpool 120 (12)
National team
2005–2007 Netherlands U17 15 (4)
2007–2009 Netherlands U19 17 (5)
2009–2013 Netherlands U21 24 (10)
2011– Netherlands 62 (18)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 13:10, 14 December 2019 (UTC)
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 19 November 2019

A youth product of Eredivisie side Feyenoord, Wijnaldum became the youngest player ever to represent the club when he made his debut in 2007, and went on to play 134 matches over the course of a five-year spell. Following his departure from Feyenoord, Wijnaldum spent four seasons at PSV Eindhoven where he won the KNVB Cup in the first season and the Eredivisie in his last. He also earned the Dutch Footballer of the Year award during his time with PSV.

In 2015, Wijnaldum joined Premier League side Newcastle United for £14.5 million, before departing following the club's relegation a year later to join Liverpool in a £23 million deal. In the 2018–19 season, Wijnaldum scored twice against Barcelona in the Champions League semi-final second leg comeback as Liverpool went through 4–3 on aggregate, and he started as the club were victorious in the 2019 UEFA Champions League Final.[3][4]

Wijnaldum is also a full Dutch international, having earned more than 60 caps since making his debut in 2011, and was a member of the squad which came third at the 2014 FIFA World Cup.

Early lifeEdit

Wijnaldum was born and raised in Rotterdam, South Holland.[5] When he was six years old, his parents, who are both of Afro-Surinamese descent, went through a divorce resulting in his mother moving to Amsterdam.[5][6] However, Wijnaldum decided to stay in Rotterdam and moved in with his grandmother, where he lived for the remainder of his childhood.[7]

In Wijnaldum's younger years, he never showed interest in football. He never played with a ball or watched football on TV. His ambition was to become a gymnast or acrobat. This changed when Wijnaldum's cousin asked him to come to Sparta Rotterdam's opening day with him; then he was invited to the Sparta Rotterdam youth academy and his love for football started to grow slowly.[8]

Wijnaldum has two younger brothers, one of whom, Giliano Wijnaldum, currently plays for Sparta Rotterdam, as well as a half-brother, Rajiv van La Parra, who currently plays for Red Star Belgrade.[9] Wijnaldum was formerly known as Georginio Boateng, but following his mother's divorce, he took her maiden name (Wijnaldum).[10]

Club careerEdit

Early careerEdit

At age six, Wijnaldum developed himself rapidly at Sparta Rotterdam, winning two championship titles in his first two seasons. Soon Ajax, PSV and Feyenoord showed interest in the youngster, but Wijnaldum declined all offers: "I didn't watch football on TV and I didn't know any of the first team players of Sparta or any of the top clubs. I only knew the real famous players of Oranje, so the offers didn't impress me much. I had a good time at Sparta, I wanted to stay." After playing for Sparta Rotterdam for seven seasons and representing the Netherlands at various youth levels, Wijnaldum decided to accept a new Feyenoord offer. He was convinced playing for Feyenoord was better for his development as a football player and believed in Feyenoord's vision.[8]

At Feyenoord, Wijnaldum joined a successful generation with the likes of Leroy Fer and Luís Pedro. Wijnaldum stood out as an exceptional talent. In January 2007, a few weeks after turning 16, Wijnaldum was invited to the first team's training camp in Belek, Turkey, by Feyenoord manager Erwin Koeman.[11]

FeyenoordEdit

 
Wijnaldum with Feyenoord in 2007.

On 8 April 2007, Wijnaldum made his official debut in Feyenoord's starting line-up in the Eredivisie home match against Groningen (0–4).[12] At the age of 16 and 148 days, Wijnaldum became the youngest player ever to play in Feyenoord's first team and was chosen Feyenoord's man of the match. On 2 December 2007, Wijnaldum scored his first Eredivisie goal for Feyenoord, against Heracles Almelo in a 6–0 home win.[13]

In the 2008–09 season, Wijnaldum made his official European debut. On 18 September 2008, he was named in the starting line-up in the UEFA Cup home match against Kalmar FF (0–1).[14] On 2 October 2008, he scored his first European goal for Feyenoord in the return match against Kalmar FF, which resulted in a 1–2 win and a place in the competition's group stage.[15]

On 6 March 2009, Wijnaldum signed a new contract at Feyenoord which would have kept him at De Kuip until summer 2012.[16] On 27 February 2011, he helped his struggling Feyenoord to a 5–1 demolition of Groningen, scoring four goals. He scored two goals from open play in the first half and two more from the penalty spot to add his total for the season to eight goals.[17]

PSVEdit

 
Wijnaldum with PSV in 2014.

On 29 June 2011, the technical director of Feyenoord announced the club had reached a transfer deal for Wijnaldum reported to be worth €5 million with PSV.[18] On the opening day of the 2011–12 Eredivisie season, Wijnaldum made his debut for PSV in a 3–1 loss against AZ.[19] On 21 August 2011, Wijnaldum scored his first goal for PSV in a 3–0 victory against ADO Den Haag. Since joining the club, Wijnaldum established himself in the starting 11 as he scored goals and developed assists from his attacking role in midfield in Eredivisie, the KNVB Cup and the UEFA Europa League. After the retirement of Mark van Bommel and the departure of Kevin Strootman in the summer of 2013, Wijnaldum was named PSV's captain for the 2013–14 Eredivisie season. However, he played just 11 matches that year, scoring four goals, due to a back injury. For the 2014–15 Eredivisie season, Wijnaldum returned to full fitness and captained PSV to their first Eredivisie title since 2008.

Newcastle UnitedEdit

On 11 July 2015, Wijnaldum joined English Premier League club Newcastle United on a five-year contract, for a reported transfer fee of £14.5 million, making him the most expensive signing of Mike Ashley's ownership.[20] Wijnaldum made his debut on 9 August as Newcastle began the season with a 2–2 home draw against Southampton, heading in a goal from Gabriel Obertan's cross.[21] He would score his second Newcastle goal in a 2–2 draw with Chelsea on 26 September.[22] On 18 October, Wijnaldum scored four goals in a 6–2 home win over Norwich City,[23] becoming only the second Newcastle player to score more than three goals in a Premier League match.[24] Wijnaldum was considered the player of the match in a game against Liverpool when he forced Martin Škrtel into an own goal as well as scoring himself in a 2–0 win.[25] He scored against Manchester United in a 3–3 draw on 12 January 2016,[26] and again four days later in a 2–1 win against West Ham United,[27] and later scored twice against Tottenham Hotspur in a 5–1 win on the final day of the season, finishing the season as Newcastle's top goalscorer.[28] However, after the season, Newcastle were relegated to the Championship.

 
Wijnaldum playing in a Premier League match against Hull City, 24 September 2016.

LiverpoolEdit

On 22 July 2016, Wijnaldum returned to the Premier League, signing for Liverpool on a five-year contract, for an initial £23 million with a further £2 million in conditional add-ons. He was given the number 5 shirt.[29][30]

2016–17 seasonEdit

Wijnaldum made his Premier League debut for Liverpool against Arsenal on 14 August 2016, where he played 80 minutes and provided an assist for Adam Lallana before being replaced by Kevin Stewart.[31] He scored his first goal for the club in a 6–1 thrashing of Watford on 6 November.[32] On 31 December, he scored the match's only goal with a powerful header in Liverpool's 1–0 win over Manchester City to take Liverpool four points clear in second. He was highly praised for his goal.[33] Wijnaldum sealed Liverpool's 3–1 win over Arsenal on 4 March 2017 with a close-range finish in stoppage time.[34] In the final match of the 2016–17 Premier League season, with Liverpool needing a win over Middlesbrough to secure a top-four finish and a 2017–18 UEFA Champions League berth, Wijnaldum opened the scoring with a first-half stoppage time goal as Liverpool won 3–0.[35]

 
Wijnaldum playing in a UEFA Champions League match against Spartak Moskva, 6 December 2017.

2017–18 seasonEdit

On 28 October 2017, Wijnaldum scored his first goal of the 2017–18 season, scoring the third goal in Liverpool's 3–0 win over newly-promoted Huddersfield Town.[36] On 2 May 2018, Wijnaldum scored his first away goal since May 2015, and his first for an English club, when he netted in a 7–6 aggregate victory over Roma to help Liverpool progress to the final of the 2017–18 Champions League.[37] His goal also saw Liverpool break the competition's record for the most goals scored in a single campaign, with the club's tally of 46 surpassing the record of 45 previously held by Barcelona.[38] Wijnaldum played for Liverpool in the 2018 UEFA Champions League Final against Real Madrid, playing the full 90 minutes as Liverpool lost 1–3.[39]

2018–19 seasonEdit

On 15 September 2018, Wijnaldum scored his first ever Premier League away goal,[40] scoring the opening goal in a 2–1 win over Tottenham Hotspur.[41] He made his 100th appearance for the club on 29 September in a 1–1 Premier League draw with Chelsea.[42] On 14 April 2019, and against the same opposition, he made his 100th Premier League appearance for Liverpool.[43][44] Notably coming on as a substitute in the second leg of the Champions League semifinal against Barcelona, Wijnaldum scored twice in two minutes to tie Barcelona on aggregate (3–3) before Divock Origi's second goal of the night sent Liverpool to the final.[45] In the final, Liverpool went on to beat Tottenham Hotspur 2-0. [46]

2019–20 seasonEdit

On 4 December 2019, just two days after being voted 26th in the polls for the 2019 Ballon d'Or award, Wijnaldum scored for Liverpool in the club's 5–2 Merseyside derby win over Everton which extended the Reds' unbeaten run in league football to a club-record 32 matches.[47][48]

International careerEdit

YouthEdit

Wijnaldum was one of the key players of the Netherlands under-17 squad on the 2007 UEFA European Under-17 Championship in Belgium. However, the team finished third in their group behind England and Belgium, failing to qualify for the knockout stage. Quickly after the tournament, Wijnaldum was selected for the Netherlands under-19 squad. Despite excellent individual performances, the team underachieved and failed to qualify for the 2008 UEFA European Under-19 Championship in the Czech Republic and 2009 UEFA European Under-19 Championship in Ukraine.

On 12 November 2008, the young midfielder got invited to the Netherlands B by manager Johan Neeskens. Wijnaldum had to deny the invitation due to an injury.[49]

Wijnaldum had to deny his first Netherlands under-21 invitation on 9 August 2009.[50] He received an invitation for the friendly match against England by manager Cor Pot.[51] Wijnaldum made his official Netherlands U21 debut on 4 September 2009, in the 2011 UEFA European Under-21 Championship qualification match against Finland (2–0).

SeniorEdit

 
Wijnaldum (right) training alongside Jonathan de Guzman (left) with the Netherlands in 2015.

On 30 May 2011, Wijnaldum was named in the Netherlands senior squad for friendlies against Brazil and Uruguay, but did not play in either match.[52] He made his international debut in the match against San Marino on 2 September 2011, appearing as a substitute in the 86th minute and promptly scoring the final goal in an 11–0 win.[53]

Wijnaldum was a member of the Netherlands squad for the 2014 FIFA World Cup, and scored his second goal for the nation in a 3–0 win against Brazil in the third-place play-off.[54]

On 9 September 2018, he made his 50th appearance for the Netherlands in a 2–1 UEFA Nations League defeat to France.[55]

In November 2019, following racist abuse aimed at Ahmad Mendes Moreira in the Dutch league, Wijnaldum celebrated an international goal by gesturing at his skin colour in support of Mended Moreira.[56]

Career statisticsEdit

ClubEdit

As of 14 December 2019
Club Season League Cup[a] League Cup Europe Other Total
Division Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Feyenoord 2006–07 Eredivisie 3 0 0 0 0 0 3 0
2007–08 Eredivisie 10 1 2 0 0 0 12 1
2008–09 Eredivisie 33 4 3 0 6[b] 1 3[c] 0 45 5
2009–10 Eredivisie 31 4 7 1 38 5
2010–11 Eredivisie 34 14 1 0 2[d] 0 37 14
Total 111 23 13 1 8 1 3 0 135 25
PSV 2011–12 Eredivisie 32 8 6 2 12[d] 4 50 14
2012–13 Eredivisie 33 14 6 1 5[d] 4 1[e] 1 45 20
2013–14 Eredivisie 11 4 0 0 4[f] 0 15 4
2014–15 Eredivisie 33 14 3 2 8[d] 2 44 18
Total 109 40 15 5 29 10 1 1 154 56
Newcastle United 2015–16 Premier League 38 11 1 0 1 0 40 11
Total 38 11 1 0 1 0 40 11
Liverpool 2016–17 Premier League 36 6 1 0 5 0 42 6
2017–18 Premier League 33 1 2 0 1 0 14[f] 1 50 2
2018–19 Premier League 35 3 0 0 0 0 12[f] 2 47 5
2019–20 Premier League 16 2 0 0 0 0 6[f] 1 2[g] 0 24 3
Total 120 12 3 0 6 0 32 4 2 0 163 16
Total 376 86 32 6 7 0 69 15 6 1 492 108
  1. ^ Appearances in KNVB Cup and FA Cup
  2. ^ Appearances in UEFA Cup
  3. ^ One appearance in Johan Cruyff Shield, two in UEFA Europa League Play-offs
  4. ^ a b c d Appearances in UEFA Europa League
  5. ^ Appearance in Johan Cruyff Shield
  6. ^ a b c d Appearances in UEFA Champions League
  7. ^ One appearance in FA Community Shield; one appearance in UEFA Super Cup

InternationalEdit

As of match played 19 November 2019[57]
National team Year Apps Goals
Netherlands 2011 2 1
2012 0 0
2013 1 0
2014 13 1
2015 9 2
2016 11 3
2017 9 1
2018 8 2
2019 9 8
Total 62 18

International goalsEdit

As of match played 18 November 2019. Scores and results list Netherlands' goal tally first, score column indicates score after each Wijnaldum goal.[58]
International goals by date, venue, cap, opponent, score, result and competition
No. Date Venue Cap Opponent Score Result Competition
1 2 September 2011 Philips Stadion, Eindhoven, Netherlands 1   San Marino 11–0 11–0 UEFA Euro 2012 qualification
2 12 July 2014 Estádio Nacional Mané Garrincha, Brasília, Brazil 12   Brazil 3–0 3–0 2014 FIFA World Cup
3 12 June 2015 Skonto Stadium, Riga, Latvia 20   Latvia 1–0 2–0 UEFA Euro 2016 qualification
4 10 October 2015 Astana Arena, Astana, Kazakhstan 23   Kazakhstan 1–0 2–1
5 1 June 2016 Stadion Energa Gdańsk, Gdańsk, Poland 29   Poland 2–1 2–1 Friendly
6 4 June 2016 Ernst-Happel-Stadion, Vienna, Austria 30   Austria 2–0 2–0
7 1 September 2016 Philips Stadion, Eindhoven, Netherlands 31   Greece 1–0 1–2
8 9 June 2017 De Kuip, Rotterdam, Netherlands 40   Luxembourg 3–0 5–0 2018 FIFA World Cup qualification
9 13 October 2018 Johan Cruyff Arena, Amsterdam, Netherlands 51   Germany 3–0 3–0 2018–19 UEFA Nations League A
10 16 November 2018 De Kuip, Rotterdam, Netherlands 52   France 1–0 2–0
11 21 March 2019 54   Belarus 2–0 4–0 UEFA Euro 2020 qualification
12 6 September 2019 Volksparkstadion, Hamburg, Germany 58   Germany 4–2 4–2
13 9 September 2019 A. Le Coq Arena, Tallinn, Estonia 59   Estonia 4–0 4–0
14 13 October 2019 Dinamo Stadium, Minsk, Belarus 61   Belarus 1–0 2–1
15 2–0
16 19 November 2019 Johan Cruyff Arena, Amsterdam, Netherlands 62   Estonia 1–0 5–0
17 3–0
18 4–0

HonoursEdit

Feyenoord

PSV

Liverpool

Netherlands

Individual

ReferencesEdit

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External linksEdit