Lille victory without Origi on Saturday could help Liverpool land striker

Lille take on SM Caen at home on Saturday - victory could take them into the top half, giving Liverpool a bigger chance of signing Divock Origi this month.

On Friday afternoon, Lille boss René Girard held his press conference before Saturday’s meeting with bottom-of-the-table SM Caen. Liverpool loanee Divock Origi has been ruled out of the game due to his ongoing groin injury.

Lille beat Evian 1-0 on Wednesday night, it was another 19-year-old, Adama Traoré, who came on as a second half substitute, and scored the only goal of the game. Origi had been named as part of the 18-man matchday squad but had to pull out at the last minute due to injury.

The last minute move left Lille with only six substitutes on the bench, but didn’t stop rumours that his absence had other motives. Some in the British press linked his absence with an immediate move to Liverpool this month, completely ignoring the fact that the Belgian striker had undergone an MRI scan on Monday morning and missed training.

Today’s news rules the 19-year-old out for Saturday’s game, although the coach gave no concrete update as to how long the striker would be missing.

Girard now has to decide what formation to play on Saturday and who he starts upfront. Michael Frey came off the bench on Wednesday and gave Lille more physical threat up front, helping them perform much better in the second half.

Lille started playing 4-3-3, with Ronny Rodelin, Nolan Roux and Sebastien Corchia upfront, it would be unlikely that all three of them would begin at the Stade Pierre Mauroy on Saturday night.

Wednesday’s victory was only the second that Lille have managed in 18 games, but a win over Caen on Saturday could see them move up to the top half of the table. That would see the relegation fears softened and perhaps it could give Lille the belief that they would survive in Ligue 1 without Origi this season.

The Mirror says that Lille are looking for another €6 million to release the Belgian earlier than first agreed, and a win on Saturday could be one step towards the two sides coming closer to an agreement.

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