Photo by Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images

Divock Origi must look to recent history to combat negative start to the season

The figures make for terrible reading for Divock Origi in 2020/21.

The Belgian international has yet to clock up a single minute of competitive action in either the Premier League or the Champions League this season.

He has started on just one occasion all season during the 7-2 victory against Lincoln City last month in the Carabao Cup. His other appearance took place against Arsenal where Origi missed a decisive spot-kick during the penalty shootout defeat to Mikel Arteta’s team.

So far, it has been a season to forget for the Anfield icon.

LINCOLN, ENGLAND – SEPTEMBER 24: Divock Origi of Liverpool during the Carabao Cup Third Round match between Lincoln City and Liverpool at Sincil Bank Stadium on September 24, 2020 in Lincoln, England. (Photo by James Williamson – AMA/Getty Images)

What next for Origi?

Origi has set the bar low this season, so to say making Jurgen Klopp’s Champions League squad to face Ajax in midweek was a positive isn’t worth much in itself.

Liverpool’s elimination from the League Cup makes it difficult to predict when or if Origi is to feature for the Reds again.

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Origi’s most recent involvement came during the final day of the 2019/20 season against Newcastle United and it was a performance that should be acknowledged.

He scored the goal of the match against the Magpies after his quick movement allowed him to beat Javier Manquillo before setting the ball onto his right-foot and rifling an effort past Martin Dúbravka.

This was his fourth Premier League goal of the season and considering he only started seven league matches last term, it doesn’t make for an awful return in front of goal.

It’s no coincidence he has been clinical when called upon. His quick movement and unpredictability keeps defenders guessing, and prompts them into making mistakes.

The harsh reality for Origi is that chances haven’t presented themselves and he has been ineffective in trying to force his way into Klopp’s starting XI.

It’s about mentality now for Origi, and having the drive and determination to power through one of the toughest moments of his Liverpool tenure.

The addition of Diogo Jota and Liverpool’s maintenance of Xherdan Shaqiri makes matters even more complicated for Origi with Takumi Minamino also seemingly ahead of him in the attacking pecking order at Anfield.

Despite the number of talented options currently ahead of him, he can still respond strongly, similar to how he did in the 2018/19 campaign.

It’s often forgotten that before his heroics in what is one of the most iconic Merseyside derby goals of all time, Origi had yet to feature at all in the Premier League all season. This is made even worse when you consider the 1-0 victory against Everton took place in December 2018.

MADRID, SPAIN – JUNE 01: Divock Origi of Liverpool celebrates after scoring his team’s second goal during the UEFA Champions League Final between Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool at Estadio Wanda Metropolitano on June 01, 2019 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)

Desperate for a chance

Origi is a player who thrives on confidence. It’s amazing what a goal can do for a player and even more incredible to think what followed that season after what can only be described as one of the more fortunate goals of the striker’s career.

It isn’t inconceivable to think that had that ball not bounced off the crossbar and subsequently been fumbled by Jordan Pickford then the events that unfolded against Newcastle, Barcelona and Tottenham might never have happened.

We would be foolish to write off Origi so early in the season when you consider how he has previously responded to setbacks in the past. If you handed a Hollywood producer a script based his 2018/19 campaign it would be dismissed as a work of fiction.

Origi has to trust his own ability and believe in himself, as supporters will be desperate that we haven’t seen the last of his goalscoring heroics at Anfield.


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