After impressing in the league cup last week with a hat-trick, Divock Origi made way on the weekend in favour of last summer’s big money striker signing, Christian Benteke. On Thursday when Liverpool take on FC Sion in their final Europa League match, the youngster will come back into the starting lineup.
Origi had a slow start to the season, but that’s hardly surprising for a 20-year-old adapting to a new league. If he can follow up last week’s strong performance with a similar display against Sion, the narrative will quickly shift from adapting to adapted, and for his part, Origi is confident he’s now done just that and is raring to go.
"It shows what kind of quality we have in the group," said Origi about making way on Sunday, a switch that made sense before the match but by the end seemed the wrong move. "We must not forget we are still young and we are still trying to work out things together, so as a team we are learning ever week and every day."
In addition to Origi, many expect young fullback Connor Randall will be back in the starting lineup. He started shakily in the League Cup but by the end his nerves appeared to have settled. Jordan Rossiter and Brad Smith, also training with the first team this week, could also be in the mix with Liverpool already advanced.
The game is still important, though, as Liverpool need to at least not lose to ensure they top their group and avoid having to face a tougher opponent in the round of 32. They will also be looking to bounce back from the weekend’s poor league result. And for Origi, another strong showing could lead to minutes in the league.
"For me personally, it’s good to be in a team like this and I think I’ll have my chances soon, so I’m very excited," added the young Belgian striker. "The thing for me always was to come in and learn. The most important thing was to progress, and so I just try to learn and to pick things up in training and any games I get.
"It wasn’t easy to come here, to a new country, a new system, and a new type of football, but I’ve adapted and I’m ready to feature in games to come. We all know Anfield is a nice place to play and to be able to score there would be a dream, so I am doing everything to try to do that but I have to be patient. My time will come."