Origi prepares for pivotal season

VfB Stuttgart or Union Berlin – Who will secure their spot in 2019/2020 Bundesliga season?

Liverpool striker Divock Origi is preparing for a crucial campaign as he looks to earn his place in a team burgeoning with attacking talent.

The Belgian forward recovered from ankle ligament damage last season and went on to make 34 Premier League appearances, scoring seven times, but the signings of Mohamed Salah and Dominic Solanke mean that he faces increased competition for a starting berth.

"I think I learned a lot because it was a special situation with a big club having no European competitions," Origi told reporters.

"For me, I just try to make steps every game. I think I had ups and downs, but in the end, I learned. I think it's made me learn even more about the game. Now I'm more complete and ready to start the season.

"I'm feeling better and better. The sessions have been quite hard, but that is how it's supposed to be. I have to focus on my performances, display my qualities, and then it's up to the manager to make the choices.

"I'm confident in my qualities and I'm confident in the group – it's only a good thing that we have so many top players."

Origi scored on Wednesday as the Reds beat Crystal Palace 2-0 in a pre-season friendly, and insists that he hasn’t been thinking of reports linking him with a return to France.

"I only thought about coming back and preparing and being there in the preseason," he added. "Apart from that, I didn't think about anything else."