HomePremier LeagueNunez making 'big steps' at Liverpool, says Klopp

Nunez making ‘big steps’ at Liverpool, says Klopp

FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football – Champions League – Group A – Liverpool v Rangers – Anfield, Liverpool, Britain – October 4, 2022 Liverpool’s Darwin Nunez reacts after being substituted REUTERS/Phil Noble

(Reuters) – Liverpool manager Juergen Klopp heaped praise on striker Darwin Nunez for his rich vein of form but said on Friday there was more to come from the young Uruguayan as he finds his feet at the Premier League club.

Nunez, 23, was on target in the 2-0 Champions League win against Napoli on Tuesday, taking his tally to five goals in the last seven games across all competitions.

“Big steps, big steps, the boy’s an incredible package. He’s a real threat in the finishing area, involved in a lot of things,” Klopp told reporters ahead of Sunday’s league trip to Tottenham Hotspur.

“He is always an option to pass to, to cross the ball to. He came on (against Napoli), didn’t play extremely long but was involved in both goals, so big steps.”

The victory against Napoli eased the pressure on Klopp following two straight league defeats against relegation-threatened Nottingham Forest and Leeds United.

The German said it was important to carry the momentum from midweek into the game against Tottenham, who are 10 points clear of ninth-placed Liverpool having played a game more.

“It’s a massive game for us. We know Tottenham are well organised, defending with a high level and counter attacking. We saw their offensive power in the last two games when they had to chase. Spurs are in a good moment,” Klopp added.

“After Leeds I couldn’t have felt worse, but then you beat a team in form and that gives you a lift. It is normal. We will try to make sure we will feel like we did after Napoli.”

Veteran midfielder James Milner is unavailable after suffering a head injury against Napoli but Jordan Henderson is set to return from a minor injury.

“When you go through concussion protocol, you are not available for the game. He’s fine, but that’s how it is and rightly so,” said Klopp.

“(Henderson) trained yesterday completely normal, so should be fine. It was only a little thing, but serious enough to not be involved in the last game.”

Liverpool, who finished second last season, have 16 points from 12 games, eight points adrift of the final Champions League qualifying place.

(Reporting by Dhruv Munjal in Bengaluru; Editing by Christian Radnedge)