Keep the cult hero or give forgotten man a chance?: Comparing Liverpool Plan B options
Photo by John Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images

Liverpool's Plan B: Comparing the numbers of Origi and Awoniyi

In Divock Origi and Taiwo Awoniyi, Liverpool have two strikers that they hope to offload this summer.

Origi is a cult hero at Anfield, but unfortunately is not at the required standard to really push the front three.

Meanwhile, Awoniyi has finally sorted the work permit issues that have prevented him from making his Liverpool debut for the last six years.

Yet he has not shown during his numerous loan spells that he is up to the task of playing regular Premier League football.

Five goals in 21 Bundesliga games (16 starts) at Union Berlin last season was not awful, but it was still nothing to write home about.

So, it looks likely that both players will leave Anfield this summer

Yet we believe that it would make sense for Liverpool to hold onto one of them.

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While another attacker should also be signed, one of Origi or Awoniyi should be kept around as the sixth-choice forward.

The reason being that they both offer something different.

Both are over six foot tall and have lots of pace. Awoniyi in particular is built like a house.

We can imagine him being thrown on late in games to cause panic when Liverpool have struggled to break teams down.

We already know that Origi can do damage in important moments.

The reason that some want him out is that he is not good enough to play regular minutes. Yet you will not get many sixth-choice attackers better than him.

So, which of the two should Liverpool keep?

We have compared each of the players’ per 90 numbers to try and come to a conclusion.

Unfortunately, we only have access to the stats of Awoniyi’s last two seasons, which came in the Bundesliga, while we cannot overlook Origi’s 2018/19.

So, the numbers will be from 2019/20 and 2020/21 for Awoniyi and from 2018/19 to 2020/21 for Origi.

So how do Origi and Awoniyi compare?

Photo by John Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images

It is important to note that because of the extra season, Origi has a larger sample size. Yet the stats are all per 90 minutes, so it does not make much difference.

In this time, the Belgian has played 80 games, compared to the Nigerian’s 34. Yet Origi has only made four more starts, with 26 to 22.

Origi has scored 14 goals and assisted five (0.65 G+A per 90), while Awoniyi has scored five and assisted two (0.37 G+A per 90).

However, it is the ex-Mainz loanee that has faired better with expected goals and expected assists. And this is not just per 90, this is in total. He has 8.8 xG and 2.4 xA compared to Origi’s 6.7xG and 1.4 xA.

This shows us that Awoniyi could improve a lot as he gets older, while Origi has got relatively lucky to score and assist as much as he has.

Yet the 26-year-old takes more shots, with a higher shooting accuracy. He also plays more passes, also with a higher accuracy.

This could come from playing in a better team, but it is clear that he is more accurate with the ball at his feet.

Origi is the better presser, with 1.86 tackles and interceptions per game, while Awoniyi has just 0.80.

He also attempts more dribbles (3.3 to 2.6), although Awoniyi has a better success rate (53% to 55%).

As you can see, there really is not much to split the two players.

We know what Origi is. We have seen first-hand what he can do and what he cannot do.

The management team may think that he is a safer bet to produce.

Yet Awoniyi is younger, so could improve as time goes on. Perhaps fans would be willing to give him a chance as he is someone new.

Liverpool will probably sell both of them this summer. But we would not be against keeping one.

Origi has slightly better numbers. But Awoniyi’s expected numbers intrigue us.

It looks like Jurgen Klopp will have to sus it out himself.

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