Liverpool's Wijnaldum plans to finish career in Netherlands

Gini Wijnaldum Liverpool
Getty Images
The Dutchman has outlined his ambition to return to his homeland in the future, admitting he still has a "good feeling" about his former clubs

Liverpool midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum says he wants to finish his career in the Netherlands, but doesn't plan on hanging up his boots for at least another nine years.

Wijnaldum rose through the youth ranks at Sparta Rotterdam before moving to Feyenoord, where he spent three years in the academy before graduating to the senior squad.

The 29-year-old racked up over 100 appearances for Feyenoord and played a key role during the team's run to KNVB Cup glory in 2008.

PSV lured Wijnaldum to the Philips Stadion three years later, and he emerged as one of the most consistent performers in the Eredivisie over the course of four seasons with the club.

The Dutchman undertook a new challenge in the Premier League with Newcastle in 2015, and impressed enough during his first full campaign at St James' Park to earn admiring glances from Liverpool.

The Reds signed Wijnaldum for £22 million ($29m), tying him down to a five-year contract which he now looks set to honour through to 2021.

Wijnaldum helped Liverpool to win the Champions League, Super Cup and Club World Cup last year, and looks likely to add a Premier League winners' medal to his collection come May, amid talk of a possible contract extension at Anfield.

He still harbours ambitions to return to Netherlands at some point, but is also eager to enjoy the same longevity at the highest level as some of the world's finest players.

"In the future I see myself playing for Feyenoord, PSV or Sparta again," Wijnaldum told Dutch publication Rijnmond . "Sometimes I look at Sparta (his first youth club) and think 'it would be great to spend my last years as a professional there'. In the Netherlands I played for three clubs and still have a good feeling about all three of them. But you can only pick one.

"I can't promise anything though. I learn from other players too. [Ruud] Van Nistelrooy once promised to come back, but changed his mind over the years.

"It's unique what I'm experiencing right now. You want to play at the highest level and win trophies, like Clarence Seedorf. It's my dream to play as long as possible. Like him, Zlatan [Ibrahimovic] or [Cristiano] Ronaldo. I want to play at a high level until I'm 38."

Article continues below

Liverpool restored their 22-point lead over Manchester City at the top of the Premier League standings on Monday night, after recording a 3-2 victory over West Ham at Anfield.

Wijnaldum added on the Reds' bid to secure a first league crown in 30 years: "It seems like we're going to be the champions. When seems to be the remaining question, but a lot of crazy things have happened in football."

Jurgen Klopp's men will be back in action against Watford at Vicarage Road on Saturday evening.

Close