Former Harambee Stars goalkeeper Arnold Origi has officially joined Finish top-flight side HIFK Fotboll the club has confirmed.
The goalkeeper who received Norwegian citizenship in 2017 after spending most of his career there. He arrived in Norway in 2006 and represented Moss FK and Lillestrøm; the highlight of his career in the Norwegian top flight being the Norwegian Cup title win with Lillestrøm.
On joining HIFK Origi said: “I hadn't really heard of IFK, but Tor Thodesen (head coach) contacted me and told me that HIFK needed a goalkeeper. So, I went online and started exploring IFK. I was impressed by what I saw. A club with a long tradition and a strong support base.
On changing countries for the first time since 2006, Origi noted: “I don't think the level is different or the game will get off much. This is a good challenge for me. I believe that playing at IFK will bring out my best. The team has a lot of passionate supporters, and it certainly puts a little pressure on it, but at the same time, I believe it will motivate me to play even better. Their passion mirrors my passion. Everything in the team seems to work hard and motivates itself.”
On his part, Thodesen expressed his delight in acquiring the services of the goalkeeper ahead of the new season.
“I know Arnold well. He played under my control at Moss FK in 2011. He is a determined person and a perfect professional who works hard in every match and practice. Arnold has made his name known in Norway, especially in his time at Lilleström SK. His last match at LSK was in the Norwegian Cup final in 2017, played at Ullevaal Stadium.
"Almost 30,000 people were watching when LSK won the match and Arnold was crowned the best player. Now he wants a new challenge, and while there were other options available, he chose IFK and Helsinki because it was just the kind of challenge he wanted,” the coach said.
Early last year, the goalkeeper was linked with a move to English Premier League side Crystal Palace but the move didn’t go through, the keeper returning to Norway last season where he featured for Sandnes Ulf and Kongsvinger.
Origi represented Harambee Stars 33 times with his last cap coming in 2017
Origi comes from a famous football family. His father, Austin and uncle Mike featured for the Kenyan national team. His cousin, Divock Origi features for Liverpool FC in the English Premier League.
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