While the ongoing summer transfer window is still a month away from slamming shut, it is difficult for there to be a bigger story than Darwin Nunez’s switch from Benfica to Liverpool.
Darwin Nunez, 23, enjoyed a prolific campaign at Benfica the last term, netting 26 goals in just 28 league appearances. He also bagged six goals in the Champions League last season, including against his new employers at Anfield in the quarter-finals.
Despite several top European clubs eyeing his signature, Nunez, established as one of the world’s promising young strikers ultimately decided to pick Anfield as his next destination. With the £85million switch from Benfica, he became the Reds’ record signing.
The Kopites have been shrewd operators in the transfer market in recent years but the Uruguayan’s signing for an eye-watering price has raised eyebrows from all corners of the world, and certainly expectations from Jurgen Klopp’s team next season.
But Nunez has not enjoyed the start he’d liked at Liverpool, with his pre-season displays so far being more of a miss than hit. He did score four goals in the Reds’ 5-0 friendly win over RB Leipzig last week but struggled to reach the same heights against RB Salzburg and was criticised for his performance.
Pre-season friendlies aren’t the greatest indicators to judge a player, so it’ll be quite unfair to write Nunez off before the league has even started. That being said, here are three reasons why Uruguay international will be a roaring success at Liverpool.
1. The attacking quality surrounding Darwin Nunez
Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool presently possesses one of the most lethal attacking units in European football. They scored 92 goals in 38 league games last season, just behind top scorers Manchester City.
Despite the high-profile departure of Sadio Mane to Bayern Munich, Klopp has enough artillery in his squad to destroy even the best defences. In Mohamed Salah, Diogo Jota, Luis Diaz, Roberto Firmino and Harvey Elliot, the Reds tactician is blessed with great attacking quality and depth.
The addition of Darwin Nunez will add more potency to Liverpool’s forward line. And when surrounded by the elite attacking quality, a promising young striker like him is ought to thrive.
2. Fits Liverpool’s system
Liverpool have always been crying out for a ruthless no.9 to put the chances away produced by their creative forwards and they have finally landed one in Darwin Nunez.
From pace, hold-up play and movement, Nunez has the perfect blend of attributes to fit right into Klopp’s pressing system at Liverpool. The Uruguayan can drop back and link play, fearlessly run at defenders with pace and be a solid target-man that’ll hold the ball up whilst creating space for his fellow forwards to wreak havoc against the opposition.
Add his work ethic and energy to press relentlessly, the 23-year-old has the ingredients to be a roaring success on the Merseyside shores.
3. Jurgen Klopp
In Jurgen Klopp, Liverpool have a manager with a proven track record of nurturing talented players and helping them unlock their true potential. The German’s ability to get the best out of players is arguably second to none.
Having given Liverpool the go-ahead to break the bank to sign Nunez, the Reds boss will be thrilled by the opportunity to work with the young striker and nurture his talents. Klopp is more than aware of the capabilities that the Uruguayan possesses, having seen him score at Anfield from close quarters in the Champions League last season.
So, Klopp already knows what he is getting from the player first-hand and the things that need improving. The amount of money Liverpool paid to sign Nunez seems a lot, but for someone with that talent and potential could prove great business in the foreseeable future.
And add the presence of the watchful Klopp and the fans will feel optimistic about the prospects of their record signing being a success story at Anfield.
I am Rohan Sengupta from one of the busiest cities in India, Mumbai. A Journalism graduate with a keen interest in sports, football is something I simply cannot live without and writing, discussing and analyzing the game is what I do 24*7.