Georgino Wijnaldum has revealed Mohamed Salah and Achraf Hakimi convinced him to join Roma on loan from Paris Saint-Germain this summer. Wijnaldum played alongside Salah at Liverpool and last year teamed up with Hakimi in France's capital.
An exit from PSG was always expected after a tough debut campaign that included an October interview in which he questioned his lack of consistent playing time.
Wijnaldum now hopes he can thrive in Serie A under Jose Mourinho and he trusts the advice given by his peers about his new club.
What did Wijnaldum say about his Roma decision?
"I wanted to come because of the effort the club made to sign me and because I spoke to Salah and Kevin Strootman about the club and the city and I only heard good stories about it," Salah told reporters.
"I also spoke to Hakimi, even if he played for Inter, he said that Roma is a beautiful club. That convinced me a lot also because I knew the club.
"We played once with Liverpool [at Roma] and the atmosphere was amazing, I knew I'd play for a club with beautiful supporters, it was the only thing that I knew."
Roma's summer overhaul
Roma have also signed Nemanja Matic, Mile Svilar and Paulo Dybala on free transfers, while Zeki Celik joined them from Lille.
Those signings, as well as a 2021-22 campaign that included European silverware, have heightened the mood at the Stadio Olimpico entering this season.
When Wijnaldum first arrived in Rome, he was greeted by hundreds of supporters.
“It’s a really good feeling to be a Roma player,” Wijnaldum said. “Everyone I have spoken to has given me great feedback about the club and its fans.
“The club made it clear just how much they wanted me in the efforts they made to complete the deal, which always gives a player a lot of confidence and belief.
"The reception from the supporters, on social media and elsewhere, has also been fantastic."