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Jurgen Klopp warned of Liverpool transfer worry involving Divock Origi after Tranmere win | Football | Sport

That’s the verdict of former Reds left-back Stephen Warnock, who believes few players will be as keen as Divock Origi to largely be back-up for Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino.

Liverpool began their preparations for the new Premier League campaign last night with a 6-0 defeat of Merseyside neighbours Tranmere Rovers at Prenton Park.

Jurgen Klopp fielded two different elevens in either half, with Nathaniel Clyne and Rhian Brewster – who scored a brace – on the scoresheet in the first half.

After the break, Origi, Curtis Jones and Bobby Duncan all rounded off a comfortable evening’s work for the European champions.

Origi’s excellent effort – plucking a long ball out of the air before rounding the goalkeeper to slot home – came just one day after committing to a new long-term contract at Anfield.

The Belgian only started seven times last term but provided seven goals, of which several were crucial including a brace in a Champions League semi-final win over Barcelona and the clinching goal in the final of the same competition against Tottenham in Madrid.

Origi was even handed the captain’s armband for Liverpool in the second half and was mobbed by fans post-match as he continues to enjoy the hero status he has gained on Merseyside for his exploits last season.

The 24-year-old is expected to play a more important role for the Reds this year with Daniel Sturridge having left on a free transfer, though reports have suggested Liverpool are still on the look-out for a versatile forward.

Klopp has made no senior signings so far this summer and it has been claimed that Liverpool will only spend £20million if they do recruit a new attacker.

Yet player-turned-pundit Warnock – speaking on LFCTV – believes that Klopp may have difficulty in finding a player as willing as Origi to play second fiddle to the manager’s first-choice triumvirate of Salah, Mane and Firmino.

Warnock’s fellow pundit Jason McAteer declared: “He [Origi] offers something a little bit different to what you have with a Mane, a Salah or Firmino who likes to come dee[ and entices the centre-halves to come to him for Salah and Mane to run on. 

“Origi offers something different, his physical presence, he’s big, he’s got a great first touch. To dislodge that front three is going to be very difficult. But they’ve had a lot of football, Mane, Salah and Firmino. 

“Origi will get his opportunity at some point and he will have the chance to impress the manager. He’ll be thinking hopefully he can stay in the team for a prolonged period.”

“I think when you look at him, he could start the first game of the season [vs Norwich on August 9], just because of the games that the other guys have played,” Warnock suggested in response.

McAteer added: “I agree with that, I’ve got no qualms with him starting the season. Whether I think he’ll be a 15-game, 20-game consistent performer I’m not so sure.”

And Warnock then said: “That’s got to be the objective, what he’s got to aim for. The big problem for him is doing that. 

“That’s the challenge for every player who comes into this football club. 

“There’s been a lot of talk about losing Daniel Sturridge and, ‘Where do we go now? Do we need more competition?’ 

“A lot of players will find it difficult when you look at the club and think, ‘Do I really want to go there and sit behind them?’ 

“He’s happy to do that because he’s signed that contract, he knows his role now.”

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