Divock Origi, shines in Belgium's 2-1 win over Algeria

By eric odanga
Jun 18, 2014

For Kenyans watching FIFA World Cup match between Belgium and Algeria on Tuesday, one name stood out.Divock Origi.

Origi and Romelu Lukaku impressed in a come-from-behind win over Algeria on Matchday 6, enhancing their chances of clinching the Hyundai Young Player Award here at the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil no harm at all.

Powerful striker Lukaku started for Belgium in their opener. The 21-year-old powerhouse, however, was unable to break down a stingy Algerian rearguard and was eventually withdrawn in the 58th minute. His performance was mature and vigorous, but he was up against a team determined to sit on their lead.

The man who replaced him is also in the running for the Hyundai Young Player award. Origi, a replacement in the squad for injured Christian Benteke, made an immediate impact.

He dragged the Africans, who featured young gun Nabil Bentaleb in midfield, out of position with his lively running and helped carve out two goals as the Belgians stormed back to take all three points.

It was only Origi’s third cap for his country and he may well have earned himself a starting spot from here on out.

Marouane Fellaini scored the opener. "I always believe," he told FIFA.com, "and I thought that, yes, if the coach gives me the call, I can help us win this match. One thing I know is that if my team-mates put crosses in the box for me, I can score goals. And you saw it today."

Rich footballing history

Origi is he son of Mike Okoth, a goalkeeper turned striker who played for Harambee Stars after hining his skills as Shabana FC. His cousin is Arnold Origi, a goalkeeper for the national team plays for Lillestrom in Norway.

Austin Oduor, popularly known as makamu, a no nonsense defender and former captain of Harambee Stars is Origi's uncle.

Make no mistake, Origi is Belgian and plays for French side Lille. Born in Ostend, Belgium on April 18 1995, Origi was 19 years 59 days when he stepped on the pitch.

He started his youth football at Genk and rose through the ranks playing for the Belgium age-grade national teams.

His father Mike Okoth played for KV Ostende and Racing Genk. Okoth won the Belgian top-flight title with Racing Genk in 1999.

It is from the Genk Youth Academy that Origi was lured to France at 15 by Lille.

In February 2012, Origi who has scored five goals for Lille came on as a substitute in his debut against Toyes and scored a goal which saw his eam a 1-1 with Troyes.

He scored the goal when he was 17 years and 10 months becoming the third youngest scorer in the history of Ligue 1. Lille finished sixth. He helped Lille to a third-place finish and a spot in the Champions League thirt qualifying round for 2014.15.

The youngster has attracted the eyes of Arsenal and Liverpool. Some of the qualities Origi has is perfect balance and is good at shielding the ball. He is also known for delivering accurate passes.

Origi who played as a defensive midfielder before turning to being a striker is one of the gifted talents who play their trade in Europe.

 

Addional reporting from FIFA.com