Former West Ham United striker Frank McAvennie has claimed that Virgil van Dijk, Roberto Firmino, and Diogo Jota’s return from their respective injuries would help Liverpool striker Darwin Nunez.
Nunez, 23, recently made headlines due to his inconsistent finishing in front of the goal for the Merseyside outfit. Since arriving from Benfica for an initial fee of £64 million last summer, he has scored 10 goals and laid out three assists in 26 games across all competitions.
Meanwhile, Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp confirmed on Friday (February 10) that Van Dijk, Firmino, Jota and summer loan signing Arthur Melo have rejoined first-team training. However, none of the four players are expected to be in contention for the Merseyside derby on Monday, February 13.
During an interaction with Football Insider, McAvennie was asked for his opinion on Van Dijk, Jota, and Firmino’s return. He responded:
“Even just having one of them back would be good. A 50 percent Van Dijk is better than the rest of them. [Joel] Matip looked like a rabbit caught in headlights [against Wolverhampton Wanderers]. Van Dijk does not let players go past him, and that is a good center-half.”
McAvennie asserted that Jota would share Nunez’s burden of leading the line and Firmino would complement the Uruguayan. He said:
“Jota scores goals for fun. Just having Firmino’s movement and touch, it would be good for Nunez. They are missing [Sadio] Mane as that was a huge loss. But Firmino will help players around him. I do not think they are far away but you can see Jurgen is not happy.”
The Reds are currently languishing at the 10th spot in the 2022-23 Premier League table with just 29 points from 20 matches.