Ian Wright has said he was ‘devastated’ to see Darwin Nunez missing a gilt-edged chance to score for Liverpool in Sunday’s 3-1 victory over West Ham.
The Uruguayan did find the net with a brilliant finish on the hour mark to restore the Reds’ lead, but shortly before that he missed the target with the goal at his mercy with what looked an easier opportunity.
The Match of the Day pundit was reflecting on that game on the Wrighty’s House Podcast when he spoke of his admiration for the 24-year-old.
Wright said: “I’m a Darwin Nunez fan, I was obviously devastated to see him miss that chance. Then he scores an even more difficult chance but then all of a sudden West Ham give Alexis Mac Allister like five yards in the midfield to chip it over the fence. I’m thinking ‘what are you doing after playing so well’!”
When Nunez missed that glorious opportunity early in the second half on Sunday with the teams level at 1-1, you can be sure that his detractors were sharpening their knives and troll supporters of rival clubs were preparing their memes for social media attention.
Within minutes, the Uruguayan delivered the perfect riposte, latching onto Mac Allister’s sumptuous through ball to execute a glorious volley which shows just how good a finisher he really is.
Yes, there are times when the 24-year-old spurns chances you’d expect him to score, but the sheer chaos he brings up front – and the way in which he torments opposition defenders – makes him easy to admire for Liverpool fans.
Here’s another couple of stats worth knowing about Nunez – he’s overperforming on his xG by 0.4 so far this season and ranks among the top 2% of strikers in Europe’s five main leagues for non-penalty xG per game with 0.74 every 90 minutes (FBref).
A return of four goals in seven matches so far this term (with only two Premier League starts, as per Transfermarkt) is setting him up very nicely to end the campaign with a very handsome tally, provided he can remain injury-free. Fingers crossed in that regard!