Liverpool and Darwin Nunez Is Not Working Out

The curtains haven’t yet fallen, but it does appear as though the complex and turbulent relationship between Darwin Nunez and Liverpool has reached a new low. The reason? Nunez no longer has Liverpool content on his social media.


For the casuals, Nunez removing LFC content from his Instagram pages might not indicate much but for social media fanatics – many probably responsible for his doing so – it indicates the discontent Nunez is feeling now, aware of the walls closing in around him, the pile-up of missed chances and the pile-on of abuse now going hand in hand.


There is something saddening that Nunez felt the need to remove his Liverpool posts. It’s emblematic of the corrosive culture of social media and how – through pulling down the walls between players and fans – has fostered a toxic sense of entitlement amongst many young fans, drunk on the need for instant rewards.


Football is almost treated as consumer culture now. Fans treat players like customer service and if they aren’t given good treatment in the form of goals, they can expect hostile reviews in the comment section of the pages. At which point it’s worth remembering that Nunez is considerably better than most forwards that Liverpool have had in the Premier League. For those who grew up watching Liverpool in the 2000s through to now, Nunez is a class above most of them. 



But we are now at a point when it feels as though Nunez’s best option for resurrecting his career is to leave the glaring spotlight under which he is wilting at Liverpool. Many great strikers have failed at big clubs but thrived elsewhere. Sometimes the stars do not align no matter the effort exerted.


Which is a snapshot of Darwin Nunez’s time at Liverpool. The energy and effort have been faultless. His innate gift for creating chaos has been breathless at times but unfortunately for him he has hit a wall. It’s telling with Nunez that when he does hit these spells when nothing can go right, they tend to be costly for Liverpool. Missed chances away at Luton, Manchester United and Everton were arguably – in the eyes of many – the games that cost Liverpool the title. 


These are the misses that will unfortunately overshadow the last-minute heroics at Brentford and Newcastle. Football works like this. Steven Gerrard is a Liverpool legend who almost single-handedly dragged them to victories in a European Cup final and an FA Cup final – yet he is constantly maligned for not winning the title. It’s what you don’t do that people hold against you. Nunez could score twenty, but it’s the other twenty he should have scored that he becomes remembered for. 


Is this fair? Perhaps not but when you’re at a club as grand as Liverpool caught in the romance of Jurgen Klopp’s farewell season, everything becomes more important tenfold. Every miss is scrutinised, every loss of possession hounded on. This isn’t to say that Nunez doesn’t have his supporters.



Anfield swells with noise for the Uruguayan every time he tries. Because he tries. Liverpool fans might have been graced with natural finishers like Michael Owen, Robbie Fowler, Fernando Torres, Daniel Sturridge and Luis Suarez over the years, but sometimes there is almost as much love for the hard graft of someone like Peter Crouch or Dirk Kuyt. Effort to overcome the limitations of one’s skills is recognised with sincere affection at Anfield. 


To blame Nunez solely would be misleading. There have been large portions of the season when Liverpool have looked off-colour without him. He still creates. The issue for Liverpool is that this is no longer a frontline of three largely clinical finishers.


Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino had a tendency to stick away the type of chances that have befallen Nunez or Luis Diaz. Their failures, coupled with Mohamed Salah’s injury, have only served to make Liverpool fans more nostalgic of the earlier Klopp years and thus more damning of both Nunez and Diaz. 



It’s also worth pointing out that Liverpool have rarely had their strongest team out. The injuries have ripped into what could have been a title-winning season. Nunez has been a victim of that. But it doesn’t feel like the situation is improving. And after two seasons coached by Jurgen Klopp, will a new coach be able to forge a new path for the young forward? Can Liverpool afford to take a chance for a third successive season? 


It seems as though Nunez himself is aware that his time at Liverpool is up. It may be better for the club to cut their losses in the summer and seek a different approach. 


By: Rabbil Sikdar / @rabbilnahar

Featured Image: @GabFoligno / Getty Images