Interest in Neuhaus may have ended but Liverpool like the look of Wijnaldum's international teammate 💪
The rising star has caught the eye at the European Championship
They say the best ability is availability, a box that former Liverpool star Georginio Wijnaldum firmly ticked.
Indeed, the durability of the 30-year-old was such that one might confidently surmise if the world was to be suddenly plunged into a nuclear holocaust, only cockroaches, Keith Richards and Wijnaldum would come out the other end unscathed.
That’s not to downplay the skillset on offer from the high-scoring Dutch international, with some confused over what the midfielder offers alongside the cultured brilliance of Thiago Alcantara and Fabinho.
Being a press-resistant machine, you could always count on the former Newcastle star being reliable in possession.
As Gini’s recent international performances have demonstrated, however, he can’t be pinned down to a strict role, being able to switch to a formidable attacking presence in a moment’s notice.
The flexibility on offer makes the Dutchman perhaps one of the most (if not the) underrated midfielders on the planet, which will be made all the more clear next year if we fail to appropriately plug the gap left by his departure.
Florian Neuhaus did appear to be a likely candidate to do just that, though Neil Jones’ recent comments for Goal will inspire some concern in that regard.
“There are targets. Florian Neuhaus of Borussia Monchengladbach has been looked at, though sources say that was largely down to a release clause which has now expired, while Brighton’s Yves Bissouma and Aston Villa’s John McGinn both have admirers within the Reds’ recruitment team,” the journalist wrote.
“Renato Sanches, linked tentatively in recent weeks, has been watched, but more intriguing, perhaps, is Ryan Gravenberch, Wijnaldum’s international team-mate with the Netherlands.
“Liverpool are certainly fans, though in fairness that goes for just about every top club in Europe. The Ajax teenager looks a star in the making.”
At 19-years-old, the young Dutch international would be somewhat younger than what we at EOTK Insider imagine our recruitment team had in mind for a potential Wijnaldum replacement.
It’s difficult just shrug and nonchalantly walk away, however, when you hear comparisons being made between the teenager and Paul Pogba.
“Physically, I see Frank in him from back in the day because he’s tall and very strong,” Gravenberch’s old youth coach, Brian Tevreden, previously said of the midfielder.
“But technically, I would say he’s a better version of Pogba in his best days at Juventus, in terms of his technique and his presence on the pitch.
“He’s very dominant like Pogba was, and that’s what I see in Ryan.”
Judging his highlights reels (which are, of course, tailored to present him in the best light), the player has a number of qualities that would certainly match him to the French World Cup-winner and our former No.5, which could very well pique Jurgen Klopp’s interest.
Beyond his willingness to be actively involved in progressing the play up the pitch, the midfielder appears already to be a powerful presence on the ball utilising his height (6’2”) and physical prowess to ward off challenges.
There’d be a great deal of fine-tuning to be done undoubtedly, though the Ajax star would be an interesting target to consider, that is if Liverpool do intend to go down the route of potential rather than instant impact.
That being said, taking into account his recent, mature performance for the international side against North Macedonia, there may be less of a wait than some will fear for a return.
If you’re of fan of this kind of content, all completely ad-free, then feel free to hit the subscribe button below and become an EOTK Insider. Dig into exclusive tidbits reserved only for our subscribers!