Michael Owen ‘surprised’ by Darwin Nunez but backs him to emulate Premier League legend

Liverpool forward Darwin Nunez is yet to match expectations at Liverpool since his mega-money switch, but Michael Owen believes he could go on to become as good as a four-time Premier League winner.

Owen claimed Darwin Nunez could become Liverpool’s own Didier Drogba, despite being “surprised” by his drawbacks.

The Uruguayan frontman was signed to great acclaim last summer for a fee of £85million. Nunez was fresh off the back of a prolific campaign where he scored 26 league goals for Portuguese giants Benfica.

The 24-year-old has not quite managed to keep up that form for Liverpool with 19 goals in 51 outings in all competitions.

Former Reds forward Owen has given his verdict on the frontman. He suggests that Nunez still has plenty to improve but sees parallels between him and Chelsea icon Drogba.

Speaking on TNT Sport during Liverpool’s Europa League victory over Union Saint-Gilloise, he said:

“He does some great things and then some awful things. There are so many gaps in his game. He has all the raw materials to be a top player but he needs a lot of coaching and some experience.

“For the money they spent, I thought you would get a more rounded player. I have been surprised to see how many gaps he has in his game. I am reluctant to write him off because he has some unbelievable attributes.

“I go back to someone like Drogba when he first came over. People mocked him for the first year or two, his touch was everywhere, then all of a sudden he transformed into an monster. I just think he could be that type of player, with improvement. But he has to brush up some of the easy things in his game.”

Owen’s comments come amid Nunez’s failure to improve his inconsistent record for Liverpool in the Europa League.

He had a golden opportunity to score the opener against Union Saint-Gilloise after being picked out by Mo Salah but somehow put his effort wide.

Jurgen Klopp had an amusing reaction to the miss as he turned and put his arms out to his side to question quite how the forward had managed to fire off-target.

Analysing the miss, former Liverpool star Steve McManaman said: “That was as easy as they come. He must have taken his eye off the ball.

“Left foot, right foot, he could have put it in any way he wanted. It is an awful miss. As a forward, he will have been thinking he could get one or two goals tonight and put my numbers up. That should have been buried.”



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