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Darwin Nunez makes “explosive impact” as Liverpool down Man City

Liverpool clinched the Community Shield after a 3-1 win over Man City, and it was impossible not to focus on Darwin Nunez‘s memorable cameo.

The Reds prevailed at the King Power on Saturday evening, sealing their first ‘trophy’ of what is hopefully a legendary season.

Trent Alexander-Arnold‘s opener was cancelled out by Julian Alvarez’s strike, but Mohamed Salah‘s penalty was added to by a debut goal for Nunez, who pounced in the dying minutes.

Here’s how the media assessed Liverpool’s Community Shield win.

 

Nunez’s cameo was unforgettable, as the Reds bagged another trophy…

2JK4EJR Darwin Nunez of Liverpool celebrates scoring the third goal for Liverpool during the FA Community Shield match between Liverpool and Manchester City at the King Power Stadium, Leicester, England on 30 July 2022. Photo by Scott Boulton. Editorial use only, license required for commercial use. No use in betting, games or a single club/league/player publications. Credit: UK Sports Pics Ltd/Alamy Live News

GOAL‘s Neil Jones revelled in a brilliant cameo from the Uruguayan:

“Where else could you start? What a debut for the Uruguayan.

“What an ovation he was given, and what a hero he looks like he will be for Liverpool supporters.

“Came on, got right into the thick of things and, in stoppage time, got his reward. A first Reds goal, and it certainly won’t be his last.”

Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher enjoyed Nunez’s goal, reacting to it on Twitter:

The Independent‘s Richard Jolly said Nunez outshone Erling Haaland hugely on the day:

Jurgen Klopp may have tried to avoid a striking shootout, an immediate comparison between two attacking signings.

“He delayed Darwin Nunez’s debut, holding him back while Erling Haaland started for Manchester City. Yet the Uruguayan ended his Liverpool bow having opened his account, made an explosive impact and won the Community Shield.

“It was quite a start.

“His 40 minutes of menace trumped Haaland’s 90 of impotence, capped by a glaring miss in injury time. He clipped the bar but, with the goal gaping, his 16th touch of the match was his worst.”

James Tucker of the Telegraph echoed that sentiment:

“A day to forget for Erling Haaland and Manchester City but one to remember for Liverpool and their own new big-money striker, Darwin Nunez.

[…]

“Introduced in the 58th minute, this was a lively cameo from Liverpool’s new £85 million signing and, having been denied earlier in the game by Ederson, the Uruguayan’s delight at opening his account early was palpable and shared by team-mates and the delirious supporters.”

The Athletic’s James Pearce made a tongue-in-cheek reference to Liverpool’s quintuple hopes still being alive:

 

Now it’s time for the main event…

2JK4EC8 Liverpool's Mohamed Salah celebrates scoring their side's second goal of the game during the FA Community Shield match at the King Power Stadium, Leicester. Picture date: Saturday July 30, 2022.

The Guardian‘s Jamie Jackson believes Liverpool look fitter than City ahead of next weekend’s Premier League opener:

“As an augury of the new season Liverpool will be the happier as Jürgen Klopp’s side already appear a slick team ready for serious combat.

Manchester City do not.

“Pep Guardiola may not care about losing this first ever Community Shield staged in July but may be concerned about how Erling Haaland was near-anonymous throughout.”

Jolly was also bullish about Liverpool’s chances of more silverware:

“Three goals brought a third trophy of 2022 and, if the FA Cup, Carabao Cup and Community Shield does not represent the most prestigious of trebles, Klopp extended his record number of wins over Pep Guardiola to 11 and, showing more intensity, Liverpool looked readier for the season.

“Their last two competitive games had brought disappointment in the competitions they prize most, costing them the Premier League and the Champions League respectively, but while City denied them in May, they inflicted a second successive Community Shield defeat on Guardiola.

“As last season showed, that need not be an impediment to his ambitions, even if Haaland’s unimpressive bow was inauspicious.”

Joe Bernstein of the Mail focused on the trophy win, also saying the Reds and City remain in a league of their own:

“Liverpool earned early bragging rights for the season as they lifted the Community Shield with a first goal on English soil for £85 million record signing Darwin Nunez – while Manchester City’s new golden boy Erling Haaland drew a blank and even failed to score from five yards.

Jurgen Klopp, who has completed his collection of domestic trophies, watched his side dominate and lead at half-time through a cracker from Trent Alexander-Arnold.

[…]

“It was the third trophy of 2022 for Liverpool but the quality of football on show for both teams underlined it’s going to be nearly impossible for anyone to catch them and we should be in for another epic title race between the two great rivals.”

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