Hexagoal Ligue 1 Trophy

Divock Origi, made in Ligue 1

Publish on 02/06/2019 at 00:00 - S. WILLIS


Liverpool's UEFA Champions League final hero Divock Origi has come a long and sometimes rocky way since making his Ligue 1 Conforama debut as a promising teenager with LOSC Lille.

Origi came off the bench just after the hour mark against Tottenham Hotspur in Madrid on Saturday and claimed the Reds' trophy-clinching second late in the game to give Jürgen Klopp's men a sixth European title.

It was his third goal from his last three shots in the competition following his tie-turning double in the semi-final second leg against Barcelona, and marked a fairytale end to a 2018/19 campaign that has not always been easy.

"In life, things are not always easy. You have to keep fighting," said the 24-year-old, who made just four English Premier League appearances and played only two UEFA Champions League games last term.

"I just try and shine my light and believe in myself and I'm happy to help the team win this game."

Battling for recognition is nothing new to the Belgium international who was thrown into the Lille side as a raw 17-year-old by Rudi Garcia in February 2013.

Just 40 Ligue 1 Conforama appearances and a six top-flight strikes later, Liverpool snapped up the prodigy, who they left on loan at Lille to mature for the 2014/15 season.

A first senior hat-trick followed against Stade Rennais FC in mid-March, but he failed to fully establish himself in the first team, a theme that has continued at Anfield.

He even spent the 2017/18 season on loan at Wolfsburg, and watched Klopp's side lose to Real Madrid in the Champions League final. A year on, he was on the pitch — coincidentally in the Spanish capital — to be the hero.

"It's special, it's emotional. I'm never going to forget this moment," he told RMC Sport. "We have to enjoy it."