It’s been a difficult first season on Merseyside for Darwin Nunez, but Liverpool’s record goalscorer has some sage advice for the Uruguayan.
Since signing from Benfica for what could become a club-record fee, Nunez has excited and frustrated in equal measure, scoring nine goals in 25 appearances but missing clear-cut chances with regularity.
The 23-year-old has, though, been one of the few bright sparks in a struggling Liverpool side and his recent injury shone a light on the Reds’ lack of attacking threat when he’s absent.
For Ian Rush, Liverpool’s all-time top scorer, there are no doubts about the Uruguayan’s ability.
Comparing Nunez’s attributes to his own, the legendary striker tells This Is Anfield: “He’s got it all.
“He’s coming from a different country, he’s playing in the hardest league in the world, he’s playing against the best defenders in the world, so it is going to be different to when he was at Benfica.
“He’s getting in the positions and you can see him easily scoring three or four goals in one game.”
Nunez hasn’t scored since December and his form in front of goal has dropped off recently, but Rush doesn’t think it’s a long-term worry.
Speaking about the importance of confidence to a striker, the Welshman had a particularly pertinent story from his playing days and the wise words of Bob Paisley.
“What I say to everyone is ‘never be scared to miss’,” he explained.
“When I was playing, I think it took eight or nine games before I scored my first goal for Liverpool.
“I went in to see Bob Paisley and he told me to be more greedy, so when I got my first goal I was virtually playing for myself.”
Rush, who scored a record 346 goals for the Reds, added: “When you get that first goal your confidence comes back and you start, slowly but surely, playing more for the team.
“But the most important thing is never be scared to miss because it means you’re doing something right.”
Last weekend, Nunez played his first full 90 minutes since January 7, and he will likely be crucial to Liverpool if they are to get anything from the derby on Monday night.
Despite Liverpool’s poor form, Rush sees no reason why Jurgen Klopp‘s side can’t beat Everton, saying: “We’re playing at home and you expect to win every game at Anfield…
“It’s one where the difference could be the Liverpool supporters. If they get behind the team and give 100 percent, then I’m sure we can come away with a win.”
* Rush was speaking to This Is Anfield at the official opening of the new Anfield Abseil experience. Tickets are now available here.