Divock Origi has given his first interview as a Milan player, discussing how he chose the club.
The transfer of the Belgian became official today and he’s joined the Rossoneri for free on a four-year deal.
After putting pen to paper, Origi spoke to MilanTV, giving his first interview as a Red and Black player:
“Arriving here I felt at home. Going into a historically big club also, so for me it’s good to get a sense of the culture, a sense of the people, as sense of – you know – the way things are going, and until now everything has been amazing.
“I like football, I’m a fan of football and especially seeing the buzz that was going on in Milano – we played against Milan in the season – and then you could feel the excitement, and up until the last game it was a race and you could feel the energy that came loose after so many years and it shows also how much quality and passion there is in the city and the team.
On the squad: “It’s to be able to prepare physically, mentally, spiritually, so for this to be able to come and perform at the highest levels and add to the foundation – amazing foundation that’s here, the club that’s here – and being able to build together. I feel like I have a lot to give, a lot of passion and joy and experience, and hopefully goals and assists. So, being able to build with the team, create that team atmosphere together, feeling for the teammates, and then going out there and compete, because a team like Milan, you always want to be up there, so for me I enjoy this type of challenges and I’m excited for that.”
On the will to win: “Being able to win, especially I think that’s the biggest thing, seeing the process of building a team and being able to win championships, and what it takes to win, what it takes to be able to perform in difficult moments, big moments, having to be consistent during the season, all these things led to me having more experience. It’s a very nice age, 27, you feel like your body is getting better and better so for me that’s great.”
On Serie A: “Serie A is one of the best leagues in the world and I know that for the number 1 spot there was a lot of competition last season to be able to get that. It’s a place where people live for football, they love football, they have passion about football. They know the history of the Club: 19 league titles, 7 Champions Leagues… this is unbelievable and history is immense. Looking even back before in the time, iconic players I can name so many. So being able to come here and be a part of this journey – I’m super grateful and excited.”
On the past strikers of Milan: “I’m a student, I love the game of football. I was watching something about Van Basten history, something on YouTube. You look at his times here, the goals he scored, even though his career wasn’t long, just looking at the impact he had. And then other strikers like Shevchenko or like Inzaghi, all different types, George Weah… the history, and I’m not even naming half of them, so a lot of iconic players and for me I love it because you come into a rich culture and I like learning so picking from everyone and kind of observing. And for me to be able to come in and bring my own presence into the team and hopefully I can help the team a lot and continue to build and have success.”
On arriving at Milan: “The first conversation on the club level with Ricky Massara and Paolo Maldini was for me so nice, to be able to speak to them and see their vision and see how the club is evolving and playing here, also being able to get the atmosphere, get San Siro, and for me it was always a special feeling. I saw the team, the way the team played, the way the coach managed the team, the way the fans are, the history in the club. I’ve always known Milan as a huge club, so all these things are for me elements that led to me being able to come here and join the club.”
On discussions with Saelemaekers: “I asked Alexis some questions about the club and obviously he spoke well of the club, he loves it here, so I could tell that he loves it. And more for me was to speak with the management, speak with the Coach and to come here and get the feeling of how it is. And for me that was the most important thing. And seeing this, it makes me love the club.”
On San Siro: “My first impression was the stadium, you could feel the history and how mythical it was to be able to play there, even if at the time we [Liverpool] played at a special place as well [Anfield], but coming here you could see all the players looking and admiring. And you could feel the football culture: small details like the fans, and the way they know the club and you could feel the energy. So, those are things that I really love. They care a lot about the Club and that spoke to me. And also the style of football, very energetic, very attacking, a lot of quality; it’s all things that I really loved.”
On learning Italian: “When I was 15, I went from Belgium to France and I didn’t speak any French. So that was the first adaptation, and I wanted to learn as quickly as possible. The same is here. I enjoy being able to speak different languages, and experience different cultures. I love traveling, I love new cultures. So 100%, being a student of the game, being a student of the culture, enjoying the time here, knowing more… I’m sure the life experiences will help me grow as a man as well… and being able to give the best version of myself as well, and that involves learning the language. But for me that’s a joyful experience.”
On his objectives: “For me it’s always about getting better every day, improving. It starts with the training sessions and goes to the game and translates to the National Team. But definitely my focus now is to be able to prepare as well as possible and then come to the team, bring all as possible, get to know the teammates, be able to get better every day and then that’s one of the goals, to be able to go then and perform. But for sure my focus is now with Milan and being able to integrate as quick as possible and contribute as much as possible to the Club.”