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AC Milan are closing in on the signing of Divock Origi, who will leave Liverpool on a free transfer this summer after eight years at Anfield. The Belgian, who has made just 14 appearances in all competitions this season, has already cemented legendary status on Merseyside courtesy of several iconic goals that will live long in the memory.
The 26-year-old has helped the Reds win the Premier League, Champions League, League Cup, Super Cup and Club World Cup during his time under Jurgen Klopp after being signed from Lille by Brendan Rodgers after the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
Over time, Origi has built a reputation as a super-sub after netting an array of clutch goals from the bench.
That includes a 96th-minute derby winner against Everton, Liverpool’s second goal in the 2019 Champions League final in Madrid, and a 94th-minute winner at Wolves this season – a strike that could yet prove decisive in the Premier League title race.
His brace and overall contribution in the historic Champions League semi-final comeback against Barcelona three years ago is now also part of Anfield folklore.
However, the time has now come for Origi to move on to pastures new upon the expiry of his contract in June with no further talks over his future with Liverpool scheduled to take place.
Express Sport understands AC Milan are now close to agreeing a four-year deal with Origi, although there are still aspects – including wages – of the move to be resolved.
The Serie A leaders moved quickly to declare their interest in a swoop for the Belgian international once he entered the final six months of his current deal.
There has been tentative interest from the Premier League and other Italian clubs but Origi now has his heart set on Milan, with discussions now advanced.
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As well as representing one of the biggest clubs in world football in one of the best leagues in Europe, away from the pitch, the 26-year-old is also big fan of his fashion.
Milan is considered to be one of the ‘Big Four’ fashion capitals of the world – something that has also influenced his decision.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s contract at the San Siro is currently up at the end of the season, meaning Origi could have a big void to fill should the Swede bid farewell to the Italian giants for a second time.
Milan forward Rafael Leao is also reportedly being courted by Paris Saint-Germain as a potential replacement for Real Madrid-bound Kylian Mbappe, so there could be major changes in attack.
Rossoneri boss Stefano Pioli is now looking to re-establish Milan’s place at Italy’s top table after a decade in the dark.
The club are currently on course to win their first Scudetto since the 2010/11 campaign – although both Napoli and Inter are hot on their tail.
While there will be an element of sadness from Liverpool boss Klopp upon Origi’s departure, he has previously made it clear the forward deserves to taste regular football.
“(Origi) is an incredible striker and for different reasons he did not play that often, but I hope one day he finds a manager that plays him more than I do,” Klopp said last December after Origi struck a dramatic late winner at Wolves.
“He’s one of the best finishers I’ve ever seen in my life. In this great team, with our (front) three, he doesn’t play all the time but he is a very positive boy, loves the club, wants to contribute and he did in an incredible way.”
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