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Klopp praises Nunez after Liverpool beat West Ham

Liverpool head coach Jurgen Klopp reserved special praise for Darwin Nunez after the 3-1 Premier League win over West Ham United at Anfield on Sunday afternoon.

The Merseyside giants started off brilliantly against the Hammers with Mohamed Salah opening the scoring from the penalty spot in the 16th minute. They looked good value for their lead but West Ham equalised before the break through Jarrod Bowen.

The hosts responded shortly after the interval. Nunez, who has fluorished in his 2nd season at Liverpool, put the club ahead in the 60th minute. Substitute Diogo Jota put the result beyond anyone’s doubt, 5 minutes from time.

Following the victory, Klopp was posed with several questions by the media and one of those was on the sparkling form of Nunez, who has amassed 3 goals and 2 assists in his last 5 appearances for the club in all competitions.

He said (via Liverpool’s official website): “Massive steps in the last few weeks. He is a threat. You all saw the goal, it was probably pretty good, right? That was really strong. He was always available for us, it is super-important for us that we have now – I am not sure it’s the right word – a ball player. Chip the ball there, get it on the chest and play from there, like we scored the third at Wolves for example. I think that was a similar situation and super-important for us.”

“The defensive work he puts in now, that’s probably the main difference. He always wanted, but it was less coordinated. Now that looks much better and we found a way how we can do it around him. Curtis and Dom help there a lot with how flexible they are in that way. Really good, absolutely.”

Nunez was guilty of missing plenty of clear-cut scoring chances during his debut season and he was criticised by some fans. The Uruguayan has come back stronger this campaign and has been a revelation since his heroics at Newcastle United.

Against West Ham, he was far from perfect. He missed 2 big chances, hitting the woodwork once. However, he made his mark in the end with a superb goal on the volley following an excellent piece of distribution from summer signing Alexis Mac Allister.

The 24-year-old still needs to work on his final end product, but he is quickly becoming a favourite under manager Jurgen Klopp with his continuous goalscoring threat. If he can find consistency with his finishing, he would be a world-class striker.

Liverpool welcome Leicester City in the 3rd round of the League Cup on Wednesday before they travel to North London on Saturday to face Tottenham Hotspur, who are currently 2 points and 2 places behind them.

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