Jurgen Klopp believes Darwin Nunez has “arrived 100 per cent” after the Uruguayan striker scored the winning goal for Liverpool against West Ham on Wednesday.
Nunes initially struggled following his move from Benfica at the end of last season with a reported £64m (€73.5m) down payment that could rise to £85m (€97.6m).
However, the 23-year-old’s performance against the Hammers saw him score the only goal of the game with a header from a Kostas Tsimikas cross, and also forced Lukas Fabianski to make a great save and hit the post among his only six tries in 56 minutes on the pitch. before it was replaced as a precaution.
Nunez has now scored five goals in 12 games (six starts) and has scored three goals in his last four matches in all competitions.
“That’s important. He’s scored a couple of times in the last games. He’s 100 percent, even with the numbers now, and that’s okay,” Klopp said at the post-match press conference.
“He felt a little muscle during the break, but everything was in order, and after five minutes [of the second half] I was just a little worried about his long sprints and balls where he stretches his legs. I thought, “Come on, we can’t take that risk,” and so we changed.”
Despite Liverpool having several chances to score again after Nunes’ goal in the 22nd minute, Liverpool found themselves under pressure as David Moyes’ men poured into the game and Alisson had to save a penalty from Jarrod Bowen after the forward was just knocked down by Joe Gomez. before the break.
The Reds held on to their second 1-0 win of the week by beating Manchester City by the same scoreline on Sunday, with Klopp admitting he found it difficult to score three more points.
“This is a Premier League game and I can’t remember a single easy game in all seven years and a few days, and today it was definitely not easy,” he said. “But we played quite well, and in some moments really well. In the end, overall good enough to deserve three points.
“This is the second 1-0 score in a row, which is absolutely normal. It’s a brilliant result… that we have room for improvement, I think it’s clear, it’s always been that way today.
“But now we have three points more than before, and it seems huge.”