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Michael Owen claims Liverpool decided against Timo Werner due to Divock Origi

Owen claims Liverpool decided against Werner due to Origi
© Reuters
Former Liverpool striker Michael Owen questions whether the Reds were ever actually in for Chelsea-bound Timo Werner as they wanted to stay loyal to Divock Origi.

Michael Owen has suggested that former club Liverpool decided against moving for Timo Werner because they wanted to show faith in Divock Origi.

The Reds were considered the strong favourites to sign Werner from RB Leipzig, only for Premier League rivals Chelsea to get a deal over the line late last month.

However, Owen feels that Liverpool were never seriously interested in the Germany international from the moment that back-up striker Origi penned a new deal last July, fresh on the back of scoring in the Champions League final win over Tottenham Hotspur.

"Will Origi and Takumi Minamino be there next season? Yes they will," he told Premier League Productions. "Origi's just signed a new contract and Minamino's only just signed. They are there and they're fixed but that doesn't mean you can't question whether they should be.

"Origi signing a new long-term deal was almost Liverpool... they were loyal to him weren't they? He'd done what he'd done [in the Champions League] and all of a sudden they they thought he's done that so you have to give them a new contract.

"That's now prevented them from going and spending big money on a back-up striker. Timo Werner was obviously a player that Liverpool were linked to and he's eventually gone to Chelsea. I think that type of player would have been brilliant for Liverpool.

"They signed Origi on a long-term contract that virtually ruled out a back-up striker and I'm not sure that they don't need a better one."

Origi has scored five goals in 36 appearances for Liverpool in all competitions this season.

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Today's Olympic highlights header

Thursday's key events


ATHLETICS
· The women's heptathlon continues with the long jump, javelin and 800m, with Katarina Johnson-Thompson now out of contention following an injury (1.10am-1.40pm)
· Andrew Pozzi pursues his dream of an Olympic medal in the men's 110m hurdles final (3.55am)
· Tom Bosworth and Callum Wilkinson are among the British hopes in the men's 20km race walk (8.30am)
· Holly Bradshaw aims to improve on fifth in Rio to challenge Greece's Katerina Stefanidi and Anzhelika Sidorova of Russia for an unlikely medal in the women's pole vault (11am)
· London 2012 champion Kirani James goes up against current world champion Steven Gardiner in the men's 400m final (1pm)

MARATHON SWIMMING
· One of the toughest Olympic events takes place in Tokyo Bay as GB's Hector Pardoe takes on the men's 20km marathon swim (10.30pm Wed)

BOXING
· Galal Yafai takes on takes on Kazakhstan's Saken Bibossinov for a spot in the gold medal bout of the fly (48kg-52kg) class (6.48am)

DIVING
· Lois Toulson and Andrea Spendolini-Sirieix (daughter of First Dates' Fred Sirieix) line up for the women's 10m platform (semi-final 2am; final 7am)

HOCKEY
· Australia face Belgium in the men's final (11am)

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