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Liverpool icon backs struggling striker to come good; says he ‘has improved’

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By Siddharth Juyal

Liverpool icon Daniel Sturridge believes that Darwin Nunez is yet to unlock the “final 20 per cent” of his potential

Former Liverpool forward Daniel Sturridge claims that Darwin Nunez can become great after unlocking his “final 20 per cent” potential. Sturridge compared Darwin to prolific former Liverpool forwards, highlighting the inevitable comparisons bound to arise alongside big expectations.

The 24-year-old has faced severe criticism in recent weeks as Liverpool suffered a sudden drop in form, shocking everyone. The Reds suffered elimination from the FA Cup and the Europa League since mid-March as they ran out of morale.

They suffered two draws and two losses in the last five Premier League games, costing them the title race. Liverpool enjoyed a very good run of form for the majority of the season but they have only one trophy.

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp makes medical department claim with Dominik Szoboszlai and Darwin Nunez example.
Liverpool forward Darwin Nunez has struggled with his composure and finishing but played a crucial role for the team this season.

Nunez suffered the most criticism on social media due to his wastefulness in front of the goal. While many criticisms are constructive and accurate, some are just downright reactionary and irrational, to say the least.

Sturridge, speaking to Ladbrokes Fanzone (via Tribuna), stated that Nunez has 20% potential left to unlock to become a prolific forward. He said:

“Darwin Nunez has improved a lot, when you look at the player who arrived two years ago, versus the player Liverpool have today. He’s understood that there are different rules in England to Portugal. But he still has a long way to go, in my opinion, especially when you compare him to some of the strikers Liverpool have had over the years, you know, Luis Suarez, Fernando Torres, Daniel Sturridge, Michael Owen, Robbie Fowler… it’s not an easy job. Nunez does have the potential, but I feel like that final 20 per cent still needs to come out of him before he’s close to being in the same category as those guys”

Despite the criticism, Darwin has played a pivotal role throughout the season for the Reds, scoring and assisting important goals. The 24-year-old has made 51 appearances in all competitions for Liverpool, contributing with 18 goals and 13 assists this season.

He is also influential in the overall play, contributing in both the attacking and the defensive phases for the team. Nunez needs to work on his composure to be a proper number nine as the finishing remains a priority.

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However, solely blaming Nunez for the Reds’ failure when plenty of important players faltered in the last month is unjust. The Uruguay international has delivered crucial performances against Newcastle United and Nottingham Forest when Liverpool almost dropped important points.