Time to notice Georginio Wijnaldum, the central figure in Liverpool’s surge

Jürgen Klopp’s men face Manchester City as unbeaten league leaders and no one has played more of a part in that than their Dutch midfielder

In every title-winning team there is a player whose crucial contribution is largely overlooked by the wider public. A subtle operator among the standout performers who generates few headlines and even fewer accolades. But the fans love him, as does the manager, because they know without him there would be no success, no glory, no shiny silver trophy in the middle of May.

It is too early to decide who that figure is in Liverpool’s current side, mainly because it is too early to say for sure that Liverpool are going to win the title. But ahead of Thursday’s potentially pivotal game against Manchester City there is, it feels, a standout candidate. He has featured in all but one of the leaders’ league fixtures this season and been central, literally as well as figuratively, to everything that has gone right for Jürgen Klopp’s side. Yet praise has not come his way, certainly not compared to that which has been received by many others in red. He is the near-invisible man in English football’s most striking team right now and his name is Georginio Wijnaldum.

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