This type of game would have rattled the nerves of the entire Liverpool fanbase last year, as the adversary’s organisation, resilience, and quality, would invariably have brought a somewhat negative result. After a proactive summer of change and reshuffling in the Anfield squad, the confidence and abilities of the group have increased to such a degree, that individual and collective mistakes can be overridden by the sheer brilliance of some of Jürgen Klopp’s more elite performers. Today ended in a win due in part to the brilliant display of my man of the match. Darwin Núñez has often caused anxiety with his erratic displays that promised so much since his high-profile arrival, yet delivered little more than frustration. This season is seeing real change and a conscious awakening of what was always within, just waiting to be jolted into life.
Jurgen Klopp on Darwin Nunez's recent form.
"Massive steps in the last few weeks. He’s a threat. His goal was pretty good, right? He was strong, always available. The defensive work he puts in now, that’s the main difference. Really good." pic.twitter.com/hxL3c5SXHt
— DaveOCKOP (@DaveOCKOP) September 24, 2023
Much of the initial LFC season of the Uruguayan striker, was embattled within a Liverpool campaign of despair. Inside a crumbling and tired squad was an immensely impressive specimen, one who simply needed time adjust to a new club, different county, altered culture, and the incredible expectation given the cost of his recruitment. Slowly but surely, the 6ft 2inch forward has become less the target man and panicky 70-yard out-ball, but more the orchestrated focal point to ignite intelligent attacks. It almost feels like he was never supposed to align with those around him, but they were all required to immerse themselves to his limitless talent pool of destruction.
🇺🇾 Darwin Núñez averaging a goal contribution every 52 minutes for Liverpool this season.
He’s on fire at the moment. Looks a different level this season, has so much newfound confidence. pic.twitter.com/rojxys6oUP
— Bence Bocsák (@BenBocsak) September 24, 2023
With an unbelievable level of pace and power, defences are now stuttering to contain the intimidating and continual movement of our beloved striker. Today’s penalty (for 1-0) was awarded due to his smart movement, which allowed Mohamed Salah to smash home from the spot. This was before he unleashed a wondrous half volley into the corner of the opposition net, to take the reds into an unanswered 2-1 lead. Eventually Diogo Jota would round off the scoring for a solid 3-2 win, but it was the contribution of one man which really allowed our fortunes to fall in the home sides favour. As the rest of the team looked to control and maintain patterns of play, our prowling former Benfica man merely waited and provided the electric movement that stretched and created space for either himself or those around him. The more refined version of Darwin will be built in time, yet our ongoing rebuild and chaotic nature is still meshing beautifully with him, in this transformation moment in time.
We as a club are in regeneration and our new number 9 may just be the most vital part of that growth. When our centre forward fires this season, teams are falling to his uncontrollable will. Today we beat the impressive West Ham that lifted a European trophy last year, a team that assumed they could overtake us. I encourage all our enemies to loudly proclaim the same ideas and our German manager will bring the Premier League’s most exciting striker, one who will put such claims to the footballing sword.
Darwin Nunez vs West Ham
• 14/18 (78%) passes
• 33 touches
• 3 shots
• 1 goal
Played really well today and got a big goal when we needed one. Darwin’s now joint top scorer with Salah (4) in all comps 👌 pic.twitter.com/MWV1g8XmD9
— LFC Stats (@LFCData) September 24, 2023