“I train with Darwin so I know his stride. I know how he likes to play. When we counterattack, we just run away.”
Mohammed Salah doesn’t speak in public very often, so when he does, he’s worth listening to. And that praise for Liverpool forward Darwin Nunez following Monday night’s 2-0 Merseyside derby win over Everton at Anfield was more than just a platitude uttered in the warm aftertaste of a much-needed three points. . She came from a pure heart.
Liverpool have a proud history of attacking duos (or triumvirates in recent years) and while it may be too early to think Nunes-Salah will one day be on the loose like Toshack-Keagan, Rush-Dalglish and McManaman-Fowler, the former promising signs.
Nunes and Salah are currently combining more productively than any other pairing in the Premier League, creating chances every 52 minutes. That’s impressive under any circumstances, but doubly so considering Nunes only arrived from Benfica last summer.
Nunes’ assist on Salah’s first goal in Monday’s derby means he now has four assists this season, all four to the Egypt international.
The Uruguayan is also at his best in terms of overall creativity. He is tied for seventh in creating big chances (nine) and is only ahead of a few of the league’s best creators. Because of this, his number of assists per season will certainly increase. Salah, meanwhile, has created six big chances to date, placing him 16th in the division.
Most ‘big chances created’ in Premier League 2022/23
PLAYER – NUMBER OF BIG MOMENTS
Kevin De Bruyne – 20
Kieran Trippier – 17
Bruno Fernandes – 14
Trent Alexander-Arnold – 12
Pascal Gross – 10
Martin Odegaard – 10
Darwin Nunez – 9
Erling Holland – 9
Ivan Tawney – 9
Solly March – 9
This goal against Everton, which came after Nunez ran down Liverpool’s left flank towards the Kop stand, looking like a jet fighter ready to take off from the deck of an aircraft carrier, highlighted how much they were beginning to understand each other. friend.
While the speed, assist and finishing were all breathtaking, the cool and quick thinking on the edge of Liverpool’s box early in the play was no less impressive.
After Joe Gomez puts his foot up to deflect Dwight McNeil’s shot, Nunes is in a good position to play.
He already knows that Salah is behind him and the first thing he does is turn around and send the ball in his direction.
This gives him time to build up to full speed and pass the Everton player in his path. Salah restrains Idrissa Gaye before returning the pass to Nunez.
As soon as Nunez gets the ball again, he counter-attacks, and four teammates rush forward, running out in one line across the entire width of the field to his right, among them Salah.
We first saw the potential of Nunez and Salah in Liverpool’s attack on the first weekend of the season. When Nunes entered the field at the start of the second half against Fulham, he equalized and then assisted Salah to earn a point for the team.
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