Liverpool’s matatu-loving Origi in awe of graffiti
Liverpool striker Divock Origi who traces his roots back to Kenya has been striking a chord with locals over the past week.
After responding to questions in near-fluent Swahili during an interview by BBC Swahili in the UK last weekend, Origi shared an image of a graffiti depicting the star and teammate Daniel Sturridge in Liverpool colours on a matatu’s rear.
“Asanteni sana kwa mafans wangu wote Kenya na especially wale wamemake this cool art.makes feel proud of my roots.Tuko pamoja na Godbless!” Origi wrote across his social media pages with an icon of the Kenyan flag tagged along.
It sparked a revelation from his cousin Arnold, a Kenyan international, who stated the former Lille star loved matatus as a kid.
“Alikuwa anapenda sana Mathree akiwa mtoi. These guys wamefanya @DivockOrigi akaongea sheng yake yote. #jamaawetu. #proudkenyan” Arnold, a goalkeeper at Norwegian top-flight club Lillestrøm SK, wrote on micro-blogging site Twitter.
Origi’s love and mastery of languages is stunning; he is fluent in four languages. He learned Swahili and English in the family home, Flemish growing up in Ostend and French after signing for Lille aged 15.
The 22-year-old told British press the guardian he understands Dutch and reads three books a month.
Origi is the son of former Harambee Stars striker Mike Okoth who earned 120 caps with the national team and enjoyed a successful club career in Belgium.
A son of one of Kenya’s most successful professional footballers, Origi began his career at Lille, and scored on his professional debut for them in 2013. A year and a half later, he was signed for £10 million by Liverpool, who loaned him back to Lille for the 2014–15 Ligue 1 season.
Origi made his international debut for Belgium in 2014, and was part of their team which reached the quarter-finals of the 2014 World Cup, during which he became the youngest goalscorer in Belgian World Cup history.
Here is a screen grab of the photo as shared by @DivockOrigi
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