Simon Mignolet believes the acquisition of Divock Origi will prove to be an excellent one for Liverpool, with the Belgian goalkeeper claiming his compatriot is primed to become one of the elite strikers in the Premier League.
Liverpool announced the signing of Origi on Tuesday, with the 19-year-old signing a long-term contract, while he was reported to have arrived at Anfield for a fee in the region of £10 million.
Origi will, however, have to wait at least another year until his Liverpool career begins in earnest, with the Merseyside club immediately allowing the player to return to Lille on a loan deal for the duration of the 2014/15 season.
He is, then, a signing for the future, and proved at the World Cup that he is a young player of great potential. Mignolet, meanwhile, was able to see Origi at close quarters in Brazil, and is confident his teammate will prove to be a hit with Liverpool.
"He did really well for Belgium," Mignolet told Sky Sports. "We didn't know that much about him but he came in and showed something to the outside world.
"He's definitely got ability; he's strong and quick, he's got skill, he can score a goal as well, so he's got all the qualities you need to become a top striker in the Premier League."
A signing for the future
Origi made 35 appearances in all competitions for Lille last season, scoring six times, although he tended to be on the bench more often than not. Of these games played 18 were as a substitute.
However, the forward will be optimistic that he will have a more regular role next season, particularly after he was able to perform for distinction for his country at the World Cup, displacing Romelu Lukaku as Belgium’s first-choice striker.
Origi managed to score only once in Brazil but was a real danger for his country, with his pace and movement posing serious problems for the opposition. Against the USA he was a particular nuisance although, as shown in this encounter, his finishing is an aspect of his game that requires some fine tuning.
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Another striker to come?
Following the signing of Origi, Liverpool would appear likely to recruit at least one more forward before the transfer deadline, with Luis Suarez’s departure requiring Brendan Rodgers to re-enter the market.
Liverpool are armed with the £75 million made from Suarez’s sale to Barcelona and, although they have performed good business so far in the window, a move for a striker of some goalscoring repute would appear to be a necessity.
They tried and failed to sign Loic Remy from Queens Park Rangers, with the France international failing a medical examination, and continue to scour the market for potential alternatives.