Wijnaldum was speaking to LFC Xtra this week and has spoken about the pressure of competing at the top of the table. Stating it’s nothing new to him and he thoroughly enjoys it. The last game was a superb 6-1 win against Watford. This put Liverpool top of the Premier League for the 1st time in years. It was great to see Wijnaldum get on the scoresheet for the 1st time in a Liverpool shirt with a 90th-minute strike in front of the Kop.
Tomorrow Liverpool face Southampton wanting to get revenge for their 3-2 loss last season. The loss felt so bitter after being leading by 2 goals by half-time. Wijnaldum is hoping he can feature again as build on what has been an impressive start to his Anfield career.
The primary goal is to maintain their great form and stay top. With Wijnaldum’s time at PSV Eindhoven in the Eredivisie has given him the much needed experience on how to deal with the pressure.
I’m not drawing comparisons to the 2 leagues, but having the knowhow and skill to win is a vital ingredient.
“It’s quite similar,” he said. Especially when pressure and expectations are mounting.
“At PSV, I was playing for a team that has to be champions every year. That means there is a lot of pressure, but I like that pressure because it’s a pressure that you have to perform well every weekend. And that gives me a good feeling.
Some inexperienced teams buckle, but Liverpool need level heads should they be in the same position in April.
“If there is no pressure it means that you play in a team who people think can lose. Especially now, everyone expects us to win. I like the pressure.”
Wijnaldum’s second season in English football is slightly different to have season at Newcastle. Where he swapped a relegation battle for a title challenge when he joined the Reds in the summer.
“The difference between the feeling you have when you’re in the bottom three or at the top of the league is huge. When you’re at the bottom of the league it means you are losing a lot of games. And when you lose a lot of games as a football player you don’t feel good, because you want to win games to feel good and have confidence.”
Problems last year
“That was the problem we had last year – we were losing too many games and the confidence went away. It’s difficult to play and enjoy football, because every time you lose you lose confidence and the joy of football.”
“Now we are winning almost every game. We have a good team and we are at the top of the table. That’s the big difference between last season and this season.”
“But we still have a long way to go until the end of the season, so we must make sure that it stays like this, because everything can change.”
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