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Divock Origi Risks Career-Defining Stumble at Wolfsburg

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Out of form and at risk of being benched for the remainder of the season, the on-loan striker is having a tough time.

Premier League Asia Trophy - Day 1 Photo by Victor Fraile/Getty Images

After a promising autumn that saw him share time between playing on the wing and at striker, the departure of Mario Gomez in January was meant to give Divock Origi a chance to stake his place as Wolfsburg’s top attacking option—and perhaps secure himself a long-term future at the German club.

Things haven’t quite worked out like that. He’s only scored one goal in eight games in 2018 and was recently removed before the half by an unhappy manager due to his ineffectiveness. He’s out of form, falling out of favour, and risks ending his loan on the bench. His father, though, says he’ll bounce back.

“He was very disappointed after the game, but the coach is the boss” said Mike Origi, Divock’s father and himself a former Kenya international. “Divock wants to offer himself again in each training session for a starting place. He is not happy with this situation and will push himself again.“

Even if he finds a way to get back on track at Wolfsburg, the last two months have been a major setback for the 22-year-old, reminiscent of his final season at Lille that saw him named one of Ligue 1’s worst —a hyperbolic honour that as much as anything reflected that he failed to live up to expectations.

Back then, he was still playing and contributing regularly. He just wasn’t living up to the hype he had created for himself with a strong World Cup that attracted the interest of Liverpool. This time around, if things continue as they have been so far in 2018, they just might be that bad for Origi.

Wolfsburg are level with Mainz on points and, given the standings, one is likely to finish 16th and face a relegation play-off against the third best side from 2.Bundesliga. And Origi isn’t performing—and could see his minutes curtailed. It’s a bad situation, but the striker’s father says he’ll put his head down and work to fix it.

“Divock has his focus one hundred percent on Wolfsburg and wants to help the club,” he added. “He has not had contact with Liverpool for a while because my son just wants to focus on VfL.”