Georginio Wijnaldum is in his stomach with the serious knee injury of fellow countryman Virgil van Dijk. According to the midfielder, everyone at Liverpool has been affected by the long absence of the captain of Orange.
‘Ajax is very strong in football’
Van Dijk sustained his injury on Saturday due to a rash tackle from Everton keeper Jordan Pickford, who was not punished for it. Much has been said about the incident since then.
“We are devastated. Everyone has slept badly. It is difficult to accept”, Wijnaldum said on Tuesday at the press moment in the run-up to Wednesday’s Champions League match against Ajax.
“Virgil is an important player for us. He has shown that from the start. Not only on the field, but also off it. He is a real leader.”
According to Wijnaldum, there is also anger over Pickford’s action. “It was a really stupid tackle. He didn’t want to hurt Virgil, but he didn’t care what the consequences would be.”
As a former player of PSV and Feyenoord, 29-year-old Wijnaldum returns to the Johan Cruijff ArenA on Wednesday for the first time since he left the Eredivisie in 2015.
He expects a difficult match against Ajax. “I know the team well, they are very strong at play. Everything is possible in the Champions League. We know what to expect,” he says.
The match between Ajax and Liverpool starts on Wednesday at 9 p.m. At the same time, the kick-off is at FC Midtjylland-Atalanta, the other poster in group D of the Champions League.
View the program in the Champions League