Divock Origi will be the first to admit to enduring a mixed season with Liverpool and one in which he has struggled to find consistency.
The Belgian has been subject to criticism of late for failing to live up to what has been expected of him during Liverpool’s Champions League run-in but has identified the disappointment he experiences after playing badly as something that drives him to improve.
Rarely can the striker’s mentality be faulted, with his young age coming as a surprise to many when hearing him speak with so much maturity and focus.
The performances haven’t quite been to the standard even Origi will have wanted them to be this season but he remains as determined as ever to reach his goal.
“For me it is simply to be a world-class striker. I know it is a hard road but I am already in a big club, I know how it works, I’m already in my second year and I have the experience of the Euros and the World Cup. I have performed in big games, had less good periods, I have the experience of playing as a No9 for Liverpool and having the weight and pressure of a really big club on you,” he told the Guardian.
“When you are a footballer you eat, sleep and breathe football. If I have a bad training session I can go home and do whatever I want but you still feel an emptiness. The one thing you want to do is play and perform good.”
“You played badly, you feel an emptiness. But I think whenever I’ve had a less good period I’ve come out of it stronger. You analyse even more what you didn’t do well, you start focusing more on the things you can do better and you push yourself to improve.”
Origi hasn’t yet been able to rediscover the top form he displayed towards the end of last season before his progress was cruelly cut short when a shocking challenge by Everton’s Ramiro Funes Mori sidelined him with an ankle injury.
There is the feeling, though, that next season is the time for him to truly find his place at Anfield and mould into the key contributor that his technical attributes suggest he is capable of becoming.
He has so much to offer in the way of pace, power and athleticism which is why it is so frustrating to see games pass him by at times.