English Premiership

Divock Origi explains Liverpool contract decision

Divock Origi (Getty Images)
Divock Origi (Getty Images)

Cape Town - Liverpool striker Divock Origi has explained the thinking behind his decision to pen a contract extension with the Merseysiders after limited involvement last season.

The 24-year-old has struggled to make an impact at Anfield since he was signed in a £10million deal from Lille back in summer 2014.

Origi was immediately sent back to the French Ligue 1 side on loan that following season and when he returned to Anfield, Origi was used mainly in cup games or as a substitute in the Premier League, especially when Jurgen Klopp replaced Brendan Rodgers in 2015.

Klopp agreed to loan Origi to German side Wolfsburg in summer 2017 and he managed just six goals in his season-long stay in the Bundesliga.

He barely figured in the first half of last season only to thrust himself back into Klopp's plans with a last-gasp winner in the Merseyside derby against Everton at Anfield in December.

Origi went on to score eight goals in 22 games, including another late winner against Newcastle in a 3-2 Premier League victory on May 4 and a brace in the 4-0 Champions League semi-final second leg win against Barcelona as the Reds stormed back from a three-goal first leg deficit.

The icing on the cake for him was when he became only the second Belgian player to score in a Champions League final with the second goal in the 2-0 win against Tottenham in Madrid on June 1.

Origi was entering the final year of his contract going into the summer and admitted that he had to think about where he would be plying his trade.

But, following his Reds' renaissance over the past eight months and the squad's determination to win more silverware, Origi said to was a simple decision to continue his career at the club.

"In the end, my instinct said I had to stay here. It was clear to me," he explained.

"The most important thing for me is I feel like we have a very talented group and there's a good energy around this place.

"We still have a lot to play for and everyone here is very hungry. I want to help this team in whichever measure I can."

Origi rewarded Klopp for giving him a start in the season-opener against Norwich with a goal in the 4-1 win and he will now be vying to oust last season's joint Golden Boot winners Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah for more game-time, starting with Wednesday's Super Cup clash against Chelsea in Istanbul.