The lanky Uruguayan turned on the afterburners against West Ham United to register a maximum speed of 38 km/h, surpassing Manchester City fullback Kyle Walker’s record of 37.8 km/h which was set in June 2020.
On Wednesday night, a penalty save by Alisson late in the first half and a heroic tackle from veteran James Milner late on ensured that the Reds gathered all three points from their latest Premier League midweek fixture.
This was after Núñez had given Klopp’s side the lead via a textbook header from a Kostas Tsimikas cross – this being his first goal playing for Liverpool at Anfield.
The electric forward proved to be a handful for the Hammers, registering a total of 6 shots, 3 of which were on target.
The temperamental striker appeared to be enjoying himself during his 57-minute stay on the pitch and offered a constant threat in-behind the opposition defence with his pace.
Ever since signing for the Reds, Núñez has already had the microscope trained at him from media and fans alike, partly due to his massive transfer fee of £64 million (subject to increase) and the fact that he was brought in to the league in the same window as City phenomenon Erling Haaland.
The Norwegian has been banging in goals for fun this season and already has 15 to his name.
Naturally, comparisons have been made between the two spearheads.
Liverpool manager Jürgen Klopp has been insistent on giving the Liverpool number 27 time to settle in, especially after serving a 3-match ban at the beginning of his Reds career, after headbutting Palace defender Joachim Andersen.
The suspension threatened to dampen his spirits but it is safe to say that Núñez has finally begun to settle in.
He has 3 goals in his last three starts and appears to be growing in confidence in front of the goal.
Despite Wednesday’s goal at home being the first in a Liverpool shirt, this was not Darwin Núñez’s first goal at Anfield.
He had scored on his previous visit to the UEFA Champions League with his former side Benfica towards the latter half of last season, in a 3-all draw that exhibited the 23-year-old’s fiery pace and finishing ability to 50,000-watching Reds.
In the recent Ballon d’Or rankings, Núñez finished 25th amongst the nominees for his brilliance with Benfica last season, scoring 34 goals in all competitions.
Despite these exploits, his transfer fee and his potential ceiling have been questioned across the footballing community, with many claiming he doesn’t possess the requisite finesse to make it in the English top flight, while others have described him as being clumsy.
While those claims seem to have somewhat subsided, a constant battle against media narratives awaits the striker because of his perceived rawness.
More optimistic fans are of the opinion that it is this very rawness and his searing pace that were the factors behind his massive price tag, something that Klopp can mould into a world-class striker as he did with Robert Lewandowski at Borussia Dortmund.
Say what you will about Núñez, but judging by the chants of his name at Anfield, it seems like a long time since the Reds has been this excited about having a prospect like him in front of goal.
As it turns out, Nunez, in fact, didn’t break any speed record against West Ham. It seems, the folks at Amazon Prime covering the game led a lot of people astray.