After handing Divock Origi a shock first start of the season against AC Milan, Jurgen Klopp admitted he was expecting a “proper offer” for the striker this summer.
Origi made his first appearance of the campaign as Liverpool earned a 3-2 win at Anfield on Wednesday night, having been left out of the squad entirely three days previous.
His omission for the trip to Leeds suggested he had dropped even further in Klopp’s estimations, but despite the return of Takumi Minamino, the manager turned to his No. 27 for the Champions League.
It was a hit-and-miss display from Origi, but he ended the game having teed up Mohamed Salah‘s equaliser at 2-2 with an exquisite pass over the defence.
Having not started for Liverpool since January 31, the Belgian’s involvement will have come as a surprise to most, but speaking after the game, Klopp insisted: “People forget how good he is.”
"It was spectacular. Again, a European night at Anfield, I love it!"
Jürgen Klopp saying what every Liverpool fan knows… He loved the full house under the lights ?
? @TheDesKelly pic.twitter.com/ddNAVvxHoJ
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) September 15, 2021
So much so, of course, that Origi was up for sale in the summer transfer window, with Liverpool left without a “proper offer.”
“Div played a super game,” Klopp told BT Sport, also confirming the striker was forced off with cramp.
“But people forget how good he is. It’s just difficult to get in this team.
“So in the summer transfer window, we all thought there would be a proper offer – and obviously people don’t watch football enough!
“Div is a sensational striker, and he did really well today.”
Klopp’s comments certainly make sense, as it stands to reason that Origi should be made to feel cherished having failed to secure a move away from the club in the transfer window.
With Roberto Firmino currently sidelined, Liverpool have already been given a taste of what to expect over the course of the campaign, with Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane due to miss games in January and February due to the Africa Cup of Nations.
While he is clearly not considered a first-choice starter for the Reds, the hope will be that Origi can contribute when called upon, just as he did against Milan.
Perhaps, after a season in which he started only six of 17 appearances, Klopp should have anticipated interest in the 26-year-old being minimal this summer.
But these outings could now serve to remind people of the talent on the market.