Brendan Rodgers likely will resist the urge to put Divock Origi into the dish before he is finished seasoning.
Rodgers said Monday that Origi probably will remain with French club Lille on loan for the remainder of 2014-15 and join Liverpool this summer, as scheduled.
Liverpool signed Origi from Lille last summer but sent the Belgian striker back to his former club on a season-long loan. Speculation which claims Liverpool wants to recall Origi during the January transfer window has been rampant recently, but Rodgers appeared to shoot down those rumors.
“That was the original deal,” Rodgers told talkSPORT, according to LiverpoolFC.com. “There were a few discussions in January between the clubs, but it was merely to see where it was at in terms of Divock. But the likelihood is that he will stay at Lille.
“He’s really looking forward to coming here, but he just needs to finish off the season there. We’ll get him in the summer and he’s another exciting young player.”
The first rumors about a potential early recall for Origi were born out of Liverpool’s goal-scoring difficulties in the early months of the season. A Lille director said in October that Origi would remain in France for all of 2014-15, but the player expressed his willingness to move to Anfield ahead of schedule in November. Neither Rodgers nor Liverpool had commented on the Origi rumors before Monday.
The Reds hope the 19-year-old can become an Anfield hero in the future, but they want to manage his development after spending £10 million ($17 million) to sign him. Origi has scored just four goals in 26 games for Lille this season, but the playing time he currently is earning is more important to his long-term development than gaudy numbers.
Liverpool will rely on strikers Daniel Sturridge, Fabio Borini, Rickie Lambert and Mario Balotelli to lead its attack, as it pursues Capital One Cup and FA Cup glory, as well as a top-four finish in the Premier League. Rodgers then will add Origi to the mix next season.