CARDIFF, WALES - Tuesday, November 16, 2021: Belgium's Divock Origi walks off after being substituted during the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Qualifying Group E match between Wales and Belgium at the Cardiff City Stadium. The game ended in a 1-1 draw. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Divock Origi criticised as “worst signing” after injury-hit start at AC Milan

Divock Origi is only four games into his AC Milan career, but the former Liverpool striker has already been labelled the “worst signing of the season” in Italy.

Origi made the decision to leave Anfield after eight years this summer, joining Milan on a free transfer as he put pen to paper on a four-year contract.

It was a bold choice from the Belgian, who had carved out a niche at Liverpool, but it was arguably the right one as he found himself unlikely to reclaim first-choice duties under Jurgen Klopp.

Injury ruled Origi out of a swansong in the Champions League final, however, and persistent fitness issues have limited the 27-year-old to just four substitute appearances for Milan so far.

Manager Stefano Pioli had indicated prior to the weekend clash with Sampdoria that his No. 27 was in line to start, only to see him ruled out in the buildup with a new injury that could also see him miss the visit of Dinamo Zagreb in the Champions League.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, February 19, 2022: Liverpool's substitute Divock Origi warms-up during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Norwich City FC at Anfield. Liverpool won 3-1. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

That frustration has led Italian journalist Alvise Cagnazzo to label Origi the “worst signing of the season” in a column for the Mail.

Cagnazzo argues that the forward “seems to already be on a downward curve in his career,” and beyond his injury concerns he “has been poor whenever he has played.”

“There is a big risk in that Origi could become a flop like Javi Moreno, Jose Mari, Patrick Kluivert and Fernando Torres,” he writes.

Of course, this is merely the opinion of one journalist, though the verdict is mixed among Milan fans on Twitter:

Meanwhile, some Liverpool supporters served a reminder to their Milan counterparts of the unique quality Origi provides:

It is sad to see Origi’s reputation take a knock in these early months of his time at Milan, with the striker clearly still needing time to work on his fitness as he settles in.

But it seems to follow a trend of players departing Liverpool and finding it hard to hit the ground running, as the likes of Philippe Coutinho, Gini Wijnaldum and Xherdan Shaqiri have found in recent years.