Liverpool are getting a top striker in Darwin Nunez who is a hybrid of both Edinson Cavani and Luis Suarez, according to his former coach.
The Reds have agreed a deal for Benfica star Nunez, who could become the club’s record signing with add-ons factored in. Indeed, Liverpool are paying an initial £64million for him, with £21million structured in bonuses.
It is a statement signing for Jurgen Klopp, who knew he needed to replace Bayern Munich-bound Sadio Mane.
At 22, Nunez has yet to get anywhere near his peak. But after 34 goals in 41 games last season – including two against Liverpool in the Champions League – he is already a special talent.
Nunez is also on the way to becoming Uruguay’s senior striker. With 35-year-old pair Cavani and Suarez edging closer to retirement, Nunez’s career remains somewhat in its infancy.
And speaking to La Pagina, the forward’s former coach explained how he is similar to his compatriots – but better than ex-Manchester United man Cavani in one key department.
“He has a similar style to Cavani, but it seems to me that Darwin is faster and more powerful,” Leonardo Ramos said.
“He is much more explosive and apart from that explosiveness he obviously showed incredible goalscoring ability. He has two parts, he is half and half between Suarez and Cavani.
“He has the power that Suárez had to go for it all, to go to the clash and fight with the rival. And he also has the part of Cavani, of being a much more athletic player, more physical, more intelligent.
“I think he is a union of those two things.”
Nunez following in big footsteps
Cavani became Paris Saint-Germain’s record goalscorer before moving to Old Trafford.
Meanwhile, Liverpool know all about Suarez after his 82 goals for the club in 133 games. The striker scored 31 of those in the 2013/14 season to take the Reds close to the Premier League title.
As such, Nunez has big boots to fill but given his price tag and potential, Klopp expects him to flourish.
The deal marks a slight change in approach from the Liverpool boss. He has for so long relied on wide forwards Mane and Mohamed Salah making out-to-in runs and finding the net.
Nunez, though, is an out-and-out striker who can also play on the left.
His arrival will offer an exciting new dimension to Klopp’s team as it evolves to move on from Mane.