It would be easy to forget that Divock Origi is actually a Liverpool player given that he was only publicly affiliated with the club for the 24-odd hours his signing announcement was on the front page of the offal. The deal was sealed at the start of the club's US tour, shortly after the 19-year-old's impressive World Cup campaign, and he immediately returned to Lille, with whom he'll spend the duration of the 2014-2015 season.
Which means that other than brief check-ins and occasional interviews with his parent club, he's going to be out of the collective conscious for most of the next nine months. He'll have a significant part to play for Lille as they try to challenge for another Champions League qualifying spot, which should rightly take most of his attention for the year. But he's still mindful of a return to Merseyside, and while his Liverpool career doesn't start in full until the start of next season at the earliest, he's already looking forward to competing for a place in the squad:
"Always with big teams there is competition, but it's also nice to have big players there so you can learn from them and grow and so you can play when the time is right. I will go there with a lot of patience and I know I'm going to learn a lot of things with the great players that are there."
"Of course there was a lot of interest which is normal. It was on me to stay calm and make the right decision. In the end I chose Liverpool and I have never regretted it. I think they welcomed me very well. This showed me a little bit about the history of the club and their philosophy so it was very interesting. At the end, I think it was the right choice."
The signing of Mario Balotelli--who is just 24 years old himself--certainly crowds the forward areas further, with Daniel Sturridge already established, Rickie Lambert brought in, and Fabio Borini securing a stay. Borini's tenure looks increasingly tenuous, though, and Lambert will likely be around for three seasons at the most, all of which will be spent in a support role.
That leaves Origi, Balotelli, and Sturridge as the primary striking options available to Brendan Rodgers going forward, which is, at least on the surface, an awfully nice prospect when you consider not only their talents individually, but the support they'll receive as part of an improved Liverpool squad.
Origi featured for 80 minutes in Belgium's 2-0 win over Australia on Thursday, and will be a part of the squad when they start their Euro 2016 qualifying campaign next month against Andorra.
- Reports: Sturridge Out Three Weeks with Thigh Injury
- Gerrard: Important for Liverpool to Retain Place in Champions League
- Liverpool Set to Monitor Victor Valdes' Return to Fitness Ahead of Potential Signing
- Sturridge Ruled Out of England's Qualifier v. Switzerland
- Lallana Features in 1-0 Closed-Doors Win Over Wolves at Melwood