Georginio Wijnaldum: Ex-Liverpool winger wants to return to Premier League at end of season

Monaco were humiliated by the Egyptian side

Uefa Nations League: Albania v Netherlands Venue: Loro Borici Stadium, Shkoder Date: Friday, 11 September Kick-off: 19:45 BST Coverage: BBC Radio 5 live sports extra, Radio Kent

Uefa Nations League: Albania v Netherlands Venue: Loro Borici Stadium, Shkoder Date: Friday, 11 September Kick-off: 19:45 BST Coverage: BBC Radio 5 live sports extra, Radio Kent and BBC Sport website

Winger Georginio Wijnaldum wants to return to the Premier League with Arsenal “at the end of the season”.

The 26-year-old was recently frozen out by Newcastle boss Rafa Benitez and has refused to start games for the club as a result.

Wijnaldum said: “It was really bad, and especially now that I am older I have to decide my future.”

But he added he still had ambitions to play in the top flight, admitting: “I would love to come back to the Premier League.”

Wijnaldum joined Newcastle from Liverpool for £25m in July 2015 and has made 117 appearances for the club.

In August he was left out of Newcastle’s squad for their opening Premier League game against Arsenal, as well as pre-season matches against West Ham and Chesterfield.

“After you are told you are not going to play in a few games, I can understand it,” he told Talksport.

“It is a hard situation, especially as it is now. I have not played for a few weeks.

“It is difficult, but the longer I stay in the team, the better.”

Benitez said at the time that he would step in if Wijnaldum wanted to leave St James’ Park, although the club did not consider that he was for sale.

Liverpool’s role in transfer saga

Wijnaldum moved to Anfield at the age of 17 and, having played his part in the Merseyside club’s 2014-15 title triumph, he has followed the side through relegation the following year.

The Netherlands star agreed a new contract with the Reds in January 2016, but he admitted that he wanted to leave Anfield sooner, before agreeing a move to Newcastle in the summer of that year.

“When I moved from Liverpool it was to join up with the national team – we were in the play-offs for the World Cup,” Wijnaldum said.

“There were four or five good clubs for me, but my big passion was to join a Premier League club, especially after a World Cup.

“I thought the clubs thought the same. Now that I am at Newcastle, I have had the chance to stay at a club that has a lot of good facilities, a great stadium and a great history.”

Ahead of the Nations League games against Albania and Netherlands this weekend, Benitez said Wijnaldum had “found it difficult” to cope with not being selected.

When asked if the midfielder would ever join another top European club, he replied: “No. No-one is going to convince me.

“I understand his decision but I think the fact he signed for another year’s contract is a message he wants to stay at Newcastle, so I will always trust him.

“We have missed his experience and passing on the advice of one of the best players in the world, which he is so good at passing to the younger boys.”

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