Sky Sports journalist Kaveh Solhekol has revealed that Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum was an Arsenal fan as a kid.
The Dutchman, who won the Premier League and Champions League with Liverpool, left them for the French giants last summer.
Things haven’t really gone to plan for him in Paris as he has started just 10 times in the league.
Multiple reports have linked Wijnaldum with a return to the Premier League and Arsenal have been credited with an interest. (Sky Sports)
The Gunners are in desperate need of a new midfielder and if their interest in Wijnaldum is genuine, Mikel Arteta is set to receive a huge boost.
Wijnaldum said in October that he was “not completely happy” in Paris due to his lack of playing time.
He told Dutch news outlet NOS: “I can’t say I’m completely happy, because the situation is not what I wanted.
“But that’s football and I’ll have to learn to deal with that. I’m a fighter. I have to stay positive and work hard to turn it around.
The Dutchman was in high demand after a hugely impressive five-year spell at Anfield, as he won the Premier League and Champions League during his 237 appearances for the club.
Wijnaldum joined Liverpool from Newcastle in 2016, after scoring 11 Premier League goals during his one season on Tyneside.
Speaking about the Wijnaldum situation, Solhekol said on Sky Sports yesterday:
“The information we’ve had is that the player would be open to returning to the Premier League.
He just wants to play“About Arsenal and Gini Wijnaldum, I’ve been told Arsenal are one of his favourite clubs – when he was growing up, he was an Arsenal supporter. I think he would be more than happy to play for Arsenal one day.
“I’m not saying it’s going to happen this month. But, they are definitely a club who are close to his heart.About Arsenal and Gini Wijnaldum, I’ve been told Arsenal are one of his favourite clubs – when he was growing up, he was an Arsenal supporter. I think he would be more than happy to play for Arsenal one day.
“I’m not saying it’s going to happen this month. But, they are definitely a club who are close to his heart.”
Not only Solhekol, Arsenal Legend Ian Wright also urged his former club to make move for the experienced midfielder.
“I saw Wijnaldum’s name. That would be amazing. A loan signing from PSG,” Wright told Premier League Productions (via Football London) of potential January additions for the Gunners.
“Someone like that in the midfield. Of that experience. He is a Premier League winner. Just to help with the youngsters and a Sambi Lokonga just to keep it going.
“Then, they can add to the squad and, all of a sudden, Arsenal can start challenging and challenging seriously.”
Should Arsenal sign Wijnaldum?
Arsenal almost have no options in central midfield at the moment and it’s seen in the shambolic defeat against Nottingham Forest in painful FA Cup exit.
Thomas Partey and Mohamed Elneny are away on international duty at AFCON while Granit Xhaka is out with COVID.
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Ainsley Maitland-Niles was loaned out to Roma a few weeks ago, which leaves just Albert Sambi Lokonga, who is in his first-ever season in the Premier League.
Young Charlie Patino is another option and he is an exceptional talent. However, he is not ready for the top level just yet and it was evident in the FA Cup last weekend.
A player of Wijnaldum’s quality, if available on loan until the end of the season, would be an excellent option.
He is versatile, incredibly talented and knows the Premier League very well. To top it all off, he’s an Arsenal fan, which will sit well with Gooners at the Emirates.
Wijnaldum would be brilliant for Arsenal, but whether PSG will let him go is unclear at this moment.