Wijnaldum warned against leaving Liverpool for money as Barcelona talk rumbles on

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Georginio Wijnaldum Liverpool Barcelona
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The Dutch midfielder is yet to sign a new deal at Anfield and continues to be linked with a move to join fellow countryman Ronald Koeman at Camp Nou

Georginio Wijnaldum has been warned against leaving Liverpool for more money at Barcelona or Real Madrid, with Philipp Degen urging the Dutch midfielder to avoid following Emre Can’s lead.

The Netherlands international is only tied to the reigning Premier League champions through to the summer of 2021. He will become a free agent if no fresh terms are agreed, with the option for him to enter into talks with interested parties from January.

La Liga giants Barca are said to be leading the chase for Wijnaldum’s signature if an exit is sought on Merseyside, with Ronald Koeman eager to be reunited with his fellow countryman at Camp Nou.

Degen can appreciate why such a move would appeal, especially with no transfer fee involved, but he believes walking away from one of “the top teams ever” could be a mistake.

Liverpool have seen seasoned stars making similar calls in the past, with versatile Germany international Can opting to link up with Juventus in 2018.

Former Reds defender Degen, who now works as an agent, told the Liverpool Echo: “This is a big question - the same, a little bit, as Emre Can.

“In football, I always say to every player that of course, in the end, you want good money, but in my life, I think a very important part in life is to see not only money, but everything.

“I don’t know if it is only because of money, but he is in one of the top teams ever. What is the next step? Real Madrid? Or maybe Barcelona?

“I don’t know but I don’t think he will be a star in these teams. If I were him, I would be thinking very hard. We have a very tough time in this world with coronavirus and we cannot go to the stadium and see the people.

“I don’t know exactly what his status is and why he hasn’t signed, so maybe it is money, maybe he wants to move - but if I am him and I am part of this club which won the Champions League and the league - I stay in Liverpool.

“Sometimes a club really wants to keep you, sometimes a club wants to keep you, and sometimes a club doesn’t want to keep you. This is three points.

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“The one who really wants to keep you will do everything. The clubs who just want to keep you, they don’t do everything. And the clubs who don’t want to sign you, they leave out the contract. There is always three parts.

“I don’t know which part Liverpool is exactly on that so I don’t know, but if I am him, he can sign in five weeks, six weeks, but I would really think about it. He is at one of the best teams in Europe and you have to be a high, high club where he wants to move.”

Wijnaldum has remained a key man for Liverpool this season despite the uncertainty surrounding his future, with the 30-year-old making 17 appearances across all competitions.

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