This article is part of Football FanCast’s Pundit View series, which provides opinion and analysis on recent quotes from journalists, pundits, players and managers…
Former Liverpool full-back Steve Nicol has said that Liverpool shouldn’t have signed Divock Origi up to a new contract.
The European champions tied the Belgium international down to a new long-term deal after his heroic 2018/19 campaign helped them get within touching distance of winning a maiden Premier League campaign.
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Origi was also pivotal in helping the Reds win a sixth major European Cup, scoring twice in the semi-final against Barcelona whilst also netting the winning goal in the final against Tottenham.
When asked if he thought Liverpool were right to hand the 24-year-old a new contract, Nicol said: “I was asked this question whether they should resign him and I said no. I don’t think Origi is any better today than he was. He’s 24 now, he joined Liverpool when he was 19.
“If Klopp wants to give Firmino a rest for example and you play Origi, the level drops so far down. That’s my problem.”
Does Nicol know how hard it is to have players in the squad who can make an impact from the bench?
It is precisely the reason why Liverpool aren’t keen on signing a new left-back this summer – Jurgen Klopp doesn’t believe there’s a player of similar quality to Andy Robertson who could be signed and would be happy to sit on the sidelines.
Who else are Liverpool going to get that would be happy to bide their time on the bench, but make such a significant impact when entering the field?
The 6 foot 1 striker scored the winner in the Merseyside derby, the winner away to Newcastle, and the winning goal against both Barcelona and Tottenham in the Champions League – why on earth wouldn’t he deserve a new deal?
Klopp even said the following upon the announcement of the new deal: “He grew and grew and grew, in training sessions you could see it: ‘Wow!”
If the German thinks Origi has become a better player, Nicol’s opinion doesn’t really matter in that respect.