Wijnaldum plays down disagreement with De Boer as 'nothing bad'

Georginio Wijnaldum plays down disagreement with Holland boss Frank de Boer after substitution against Latvia as ‘nothing bad’… but Liverpool midfielder admits he was ‘disappointed’ to be taken off in World Cup qualifying victory

  • Georginio Wijnaldum was substituted in the 79th minute for Donny van de Beek
  • The Holland midfielder was visibly upset and had words with Frank de Boer 
  • But Wijnaldum downplayed the disagreement with his manager after the game
  • REPORT: Holland pep up World Cup qualifying campaign with win against Latvia  

Georginio Wijnaldum has played down his touchline row with Frank de Boer after the Holland midfielder was substituted during Saturday’s 2-0 win against Latvia. 

The Liverpool midfielder, who started the match, was taken off with 11 minutes to go for Donny van de Beek as the Dutch cruised to a comfortable World Cup qualifying win in Amsterdam. 

As he came off, Wijnaldum had a frank exchange of words with De Boer and was visibly upset at being removed from the action, but the 30-year-old downplayed the argument post-match. 

Georginio Wijnaldum has played down his touchline row with Frank De Boer on Saturday night

Wijnaldum admitted he wanted to stay on but insisted the disagreement was ‘nothing bad’

‘My substitution? Yes I was a bit disappointed. But we shouldn’t make it bigger than it is,’ Wijnaldum told NOS after the game.

 ‘I wanted to remain on the pitch because I had the feeling that I could score another goal because Latvia were becoming more open in their defence. 

‘But me and the coach have already talked about it, it’s nothing bad.

‘You have fun in the game and you don’t really want to be taken off. But you also have players on the bench, of course, and I also think this is a good time to put them in to keep the feeling across the team as good as possible.

‘So on the one hand I was very disappointed, but on the other hand it is also good for the group process when other guys play too.’

Steven Berghuis fired in the opener as Holland beat Latvia in their opening World Cup qualifier

Memphis Depay also seemed disappointed at being taken off, as he made way for Steven Bergwijn in the final minute, but De Boer explained his thinking afterwards.  

‘Memphis wanted to score and he was close a few times, I think he was more concerned with that than the substitution,’ the Holland boss said. 

‘Gini has played so much, I told him to understand that we are a squad of 24 players and they also need to get the feeling that they belong.’ 

Steven Berghuis and Luuk de Jong scored the goals as Holland got their World Cup qualifying campaign back on track with three points at the Johan Cruyff Arena, following a recent miserable 4-2 defeat to Turkey.

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