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Liverpool midfielder Gini Wijnaldum revealed that Virgil van Dijk asked him to score against Wolverhampton Wanderers before the match.
The Reds moved to second place in the Premier League, atop jointly with Tottenham Hotspur and only separated by goal difference, after earning a resounding 4-0 win over Wolves on Sunday at Anfield.
Wijnaldum delivered on his promise by scoring on the night and also performed Van Dijk’s signature celebration – he put his hand under his chin and wiggled his fingers.
The 30-year-old explained to the club website on celebration:
“I already said that every goal he scores this year I will dedicate it to him because we all miss him.
“It was great to have him back. He told me in the locker room: ‘Today I want to see something, I want a goal’ and I said: ‘No problem!
Mohamed Salah took advantage of a mistake by Conor Coady to score the first goal of the first half. After the break, the Dutchman huddled in the upper right corner from long range, before Joel Matip’s header and Nelson Semedo’s own goal encapsulated a memorable night for the Reds where 2,000 fans returned to Anfield for the first time after 269 days.
Van Dijk, who was watching the game from the stands, is currently out with a devastating knee ligament injury that contracted in October. The Dutch defender has been absent for a long time but is recovering well.
Wijnaldum is arguably one of the Reds’ best players this season, alongside Andy Robertson and Salah.
The 30-year-old has been a mainstay on the team, and his energy in the middle of the park has been simply remarkable. It was his 11th consecutive outing with the club and the national team, and he shows no signs of fatigue. Rather, he has suggested who enjoys this opportunity to play regularly.
The only problem that remains now is with the status of your contract. He only has a few months left on his current contract, and there is no indication whether he will sign a new contract at the club. Jurgen Klopp, the Reds boss, is hopeful that a solution can be reached quickly.
Liverpool will now face Midtjylland on Wednesday away from home in the Champions League. The Reds have already qualified for the knockout stages, so Klopp can rest several key players, including Wijnaldum.