Liverpool need striker help, but any striker they bring in now could get in the way of Divock Origi’s development when the young Belgian arrives in the summer. With Origi and his current club, Lille, both struggling in recent months, widespread reports had Liverpool agreeing to pay around £3M to terminate the player’s loan early and bring him to Anfield this month.
It seemed the obvious answer, both for Liverpool’s need for another option up top and as a way of rescuing Origi from an increasingly bad situation that has seen the striker booed by Lille fans in recent weeks. Lille, meanwhile, aren’t getting much of a return on the pitch from the player and would lose little by cutting him lose early—particularly if they got a few million extra pounds in compensation.
According to Lille’s president, though, anyone expecting a deal to get done could be waiting an awfully long time. Not only do Lille have no interest in moving Origi on early, but according to Michel Seydoux, there have been no discussions between the two clubs concerning the player’s short-term future and he expects that Origi will remain a Lille player until the summer as originally planned.
"I have not received any offer from Liverpool," said Seydoux when he joined the club’s manager at a recent pre-match press conference. "There is nothing new to report for Lille, no new arrivals or departures aside from the return of (Abdoulaye) Diaby from loan, which we will formalize after the African Cup of Nations. For now, Divock Origi is a Lille player and we’re counting on him."
Recent suggestions that a deal to send Origi to Liverpool early is all but done have also been batted back by the player’s father, who when asked about his son’s situation over the weekend said that he was aware of no plans to end the loan early. Taken together, that seemingly done deal to bring Origi to Liverpool this month rather than in the summer now appears a hollow rumour.
"There have been no talks between the clubs that we’re aware of," the player’s father told Het Nieuwsblad. "As of right now, Divock is staying at Lille for the next six months, and there have been no communications to suggest otherwise."