Liverpool midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum is still very angry with Jordan Pickford after the Everton goalkeeper injured his countryman and Reds teammate Virgil van Dijk. The goalkeeper made a hard challenge on the Liverpool defender, who then suffered a heavy knee injury. Van Dijk will be out for six to eight months and his participation on the European Championship with the Netherlands is also uncertain at this point.
“Of course we are upset,” said Wijnaldum at a pre-match press conference ahead of Wednesday’s Champions League clash with Ajax. “The way Pickford went in to the challenge was completely, in my opinion, stupid. I believe he didn’t want to injure Virgil the way he injured him, but the way he took the tackle, he didn’t care about what happened after the tackle.”
“I think we had it a lot in the games against Everton. In my opinion they take it way too far in the games we play against them. We know it is a derby and everyone wants to win that derby, sometimes you go over the top, but it was too much. It was not only his tackle. If we talk about the tackle from Richarlison on Thiago, that was also a nasty one.”
The challenge by Pickford was not reviewed by the VAR and the goalkeeper will not be suspended by the FA. “Accidents can always happen in football, you can be unlucky but they way they were doing it was completely unacceptable,” added Wijnaldum. “It makes it harder that they don’t get punished. In this case Pickford doesn’t get punished after seeing the videos.”