Darwin Nunez is becoming a real problem for all observers of the Premier League. But this is not yet the case for his coach Jürgen Klopp, who has bet €100 million on him to compensate for the departure of Senegalese Sadio Mané. The proof is that the German technician has just defended himself against the criticisms he is facing because of his incredible failures.
The Boxing Day 2022 has brought us back Darwin Núñez in the spotlight. Since the Liverpool striker signed last summer from Benfica for 75+25 million euros, continues to face difficulties in front of goal. And if he has scored 9 goals and 4 assists in the 20 games he has played so far, his mistakes since the pre-season outweigh his successes. Better yet, his lack of accuracy in his first training session with the Liverpool Reds has gone viral.
Indeed, Darwin Nunez’s debut with the Liverpool Reds ended in a defeat in a friendly match against Manchester United (4-0). At that time, Klopp had already defended him: “It was only his third session and I think that after the third sprint, his lungs were about to burst. We almost killed him with those balls. In his second friendly, against Crystal Palace, he was again a bit of a dud. He missed a few good goals and was very inaccurate in his controls and passes.
But here again, Klopp intervened: “I am not worried at all about Darwin Nunez. I’m not interested in the general opinion. We all know that for many people it is a game to point out certain situations where a player is not doing well. I couldn’t be more relaxed about it. I’m totally convinced of his potential.”
However, if the player has been forgotten for a while, the “ghosts” were resurrected in the 3-1 victory over Aston Villa on Boxing Day. “You’re just an Andy Carrol,” even chanted Villa fans. For the record, Darwin Nunez had the most shots in the game (six, four of which were on target)… but he couldn’t find the net. In addition, he missed two obvious handballs in the 28th minute and 75th minute, which again sparked the same on social media.
Fortunately, Klopp is still at Liverpool to support him: “You can’t imagine how many great chances I’ve seen other strikers miss on their debut. I’m very calm. What I really like about him is his specificity in the final third of the pitch, his work ethic, the depth he brings to us… He’s unstoppable. No defender can stop him at speed. He played an exceptional game and that’s what counts. However, it is worth reminding the German, that his striker has become the player who has missed the most clear-cut chances in the Premier League.