Lille coach Rene Girard has hit out at Liverpool by claiming that their deal for Divock Origi and subsequent January interest has ruined the player’s form in Ligue 1.
The 19-year-old Belgian is already technically a Reds player after agreeing to an £11m switch last summer, but a part of the deal hinged on his return to the north of France on loan for the season.
Origi duly headed back across The Channel, but Liverpool’s striker issues at the turn of the year led to claims that an agreement to get him in early was being sought by Brendan Rodgers’ side.
The teenager impressed last term and at the World Cup with Belgium, but a tally of just three goals this term in league action has led to criticism.
And Girard feels that the looming move to Merseyside and Liverpool’s rumoured pursuit of him in January has turned the player’s head:
“We sometimes forget how young a player he is, sometimes it is good that he misses a match.” He is quoted by The Express.
“One thinks that he feels already at Liverpool. That he is not giving his all.
“Also, Liverpool came for him again during the winter transfer window. That is not easy to cope with. But I am still sure that he is not at 100 per cent.”