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Liverpool will not allow Georginio Wijnaldum to run down his contract without having a contingency plan in place, says Emile Heskey, with the Reds expected to have replacements in mind.
Wijnaldum’s contract is continuing to run down, with no fresh terms agreed as yet with the 30-year-old midfielder.
Heskey is hoping that a compromise can be reached that keeps Wijnaldum in his current surroundings, given his value to the Liverpool cause over recent years, but he expects Jurgen Klopp to be planning for all eventualities.
The former Reds striker told Stadium Astro of a long-running saga: “I would love him to stay. If he does go, do you think Liverpool don’t have replacements or a replacement in mind?
“He’s going to be 31 in November so he’s probably the wrong side of what everyone classes as being on the up.
“For Liverpool, it’s about trying to get the best deal for them. It’s a negotiation. If you are that far apart then it won’t happen. If you are close, then something could possibly happen.”
While being keen to see a Champions League and Premier League title winner stay put, Heskey can appreciate why a switch to Barcelona would appeal to Wijnaldum, with it likely that talks have already been held with those at Camp Nou.
“You’re going to play for a manager that you already know. You know what they are capable of doing and they will have sold you a project,” Heskey added.
“I’m pretty sure he will have spoken to that manager and they will have sold a project they are building. They will have a looked at a five or 10-year project and he will have said ‘yes, I can be a part of this’ or ‘no, I don’t want to be part of it because it doesn’t look solid enough’.