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The role Fabinho is playing in helping Darwin Nunez settle – “We know how good he is”

Though Fabinho believes Liverpool’s club-record signing Darwin Nunez “may need a bit of time to adapt,” the Brazilian is playing a key role in helping him settle.

After just over an hour of football on the pre-season tour of Asia, Nunez is attracting bizarre levels of criticism on social media channels.

This is, sadly, inclusive of sections of Liverpool fans, with the £85 million fee paid to sign the Uruguayan from Benfica clearly heightening the expectation.

In a way, the immediate impact of Luis Diaz following his own switch from Portugal in January may have made the landscape rockier for Nunez in his early weeks, but there is a conviction among the squad that he will shine.

Fabinho, speaking to The Athletic‘s James Pearce, has acknowledged that Nunez may require a longer bedding-in period, as he himself did.

“Darwin may need a bit of time to adapt, let’s see,” he said.

“But a player like him can really change a team.

“He’s a proper No. 9. He’s a goalscorer. He scored in both games against us in the Champions League. We know how good he is.”

BANGKOK, THAILAND - Monday, July 11, 2022: Liverpool's new singing Darwin Núñez (R) and Thiago Alcântara during a training session at the Rajamangala National Stadium on day two of the club's Asia Tour ahead of a friendly match against Manchester United FC. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

One of the biggest obstacles for Nunez is the language barrier, as the 23-year-old barely speaks English, but Fabinho has explained how he is helping him in that respect.

“It was hard for me at the start with the adaptation,” the now-fluent Fabinho recalled.

“That’s why whenever we sign a new player I always try to help him as much as possible.

“Like Darwin now, his English isn’t very good, so I’m always trying to help him in training by explaining some situations to him.

“When I first came to Liverpool, Firmino and Moreno were really important for me. They helped me to settle in.

“I try to support new players now in the same way as those boys supported me.”

SINGAPORE - Thursday, July 14, 2022: Liverpool's Darwin Núñez (C) during a training sessional at the National Stadium, Singapore ahead of the Standard Chartered Trophy pre-season friendly match against Crystal Palace. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Nunez has slotted in well with the likes of Fabinho, Fabio Carvalho, Thiago, Roberto Firmino and Luis Diaz as they are all able to communicate in a shared language.

And while Jurgen Klopp is unable to speak many words in Spanish or Portuguese, he can call upon two experts in assistant manager Pepijn Lijnders and elite development coach Vitor Matos.

So while it may still be a difficult start to life at Liverpool for the No. 27, he has not simply been thrown in at the deep end with no help, with the complexion of the squad designed to help him settle.

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