Liverpool forward Divock Origi revealed he snubbed an opportunity to join Manchester United as a teenager, though he does not regret the decision.
Origi, 20, plays for Liverpool after swapping Lille for Merseyside in 2014, however, it could have been different had the Belgium international accepted an offer from the Premier League club’s rivals.
As Liverpool prepare to lock horns with United in the Europe League’s last 16 on Thursday, Origi said he opted against a move to Old Trafford as a 15-year-old.
“It was just a decision of my heart,” Origi said. “At that moment I wanted to be a product of the Lille academy.
“I had just seen Eden Hazard come through and Lille had players like Gervinho and Joe Cole in the first team, so I thought I would have a good chance of making it there.
“I still remember coming home from school and my parents asking me to sit down because there was something they wanted to discuss. But, even though the offer was a good one, they told me I could choose.
“I didn’t have anything against Manchester United or any other team, and my dream was always to play in the Premier League one day, but my heart told me the best thing would be to stay at Lille. I had a day or so of thinking it over but in the end I believe I made a good choice.”
Origi has scored five goals in all competitions for Liverpool this season.