Liverpool, as a team, has made progress this year. Divock Origi, on the other hand, has struggled for regular minutes and might not be quite where he was at the same time a year ago. At least that’s how the young striker sees it, and he wants to put that right in what’s left of the season.
“As a team this year we have certainly made progress and for me now the most important thing is to play,” the 21-year-old striker noted. “I am somebody who loves football. You want to play every game, and I’m always confident that I can help the team and bring my qualities.”
Given what Origi showed last year, it would be unwise to count him out. Still, it’s clear that Jürgen Klopp’s side has changed and grown in his time in charge, and one of the biggest changes has been the embrace of Roberto Firmino as his first choice to lead the line for Liverpool.
Firmino’s finishing may not always be entirely convincing, but his movement and pressing sets up Sadio Mané and Adam Lallana and Philippe Coutinho for success even when he isn’t finding the back of the net himself. His play has become key to making the rest of the team look better.
If Origi is to make things difficult for the manager, then, it will need to be by adding some of Firmino’s talents to his game. It’s something both of Liverpool’s more traditional strikers have struggled to do this season, but Origi at least has youth on his side.
He also has the kind of pace to his game that suggests he might be able to develop into an attacker who plays off of Firmino, too, filling a role of overlapping pace similar to what Mané offers. Either way, it will be hard work, but Origi says he’s up for the challenge.
“I want to make it hard for the manager to leave me out,” Origi added. “When he has a problem choosing his team then that can only be a positive. Competition for places can only be good for the club.”