'Definitely not happy' - Jurgen Klopp admits Darwin Nunez problem after Liverpool future speculation

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - APRIL 24: Jurgen Klopp the head coach / manager of Liverpool consoles a dejected Darwin Nunez of Liverpool after his teams 2-0 loss during the Premier League match between Everton FC and Liverpool FC at Goodison Park on April 24, 2024 in Liverpool, England.(Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images)

Jurgen Klopp has played down speculation about Darwin Nunez’s future at Liverpool - but conceded the striker is "not happy".

Nunez made headlines after deleting all but one of his Reds-related pictures on Instagram last weekend after missing a glaring chance in the 4-2 victory over Tottenham Hotspur. He also blocked some fan accounts on Twitter and has since limited who can comment on his posts on Instagram, with it believed his actions are in response to online abuse.

While the Uruguayan has scored 18 goals this season, he has scored just one from his last 11 matches, with that strike inadvertently going in off his backside after chasing down the goalkeeper against Sheffield United. With Liverpool’s title-charge collapsing during such a run, as they also exited both the Europa League and FA Cup, Nunez has faced increasing scrutiny in response to his finishing abilities and big chances missed.

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Losing his place in the starting XI in recent weeks as a result of his loss of form, the 24-year-old's future at Anfield has been debated ahead of Klopp standing down as manager this summer.

But while the Reds boss admitted that Nunez isn’t not in the best of form at the moment, he backed the forward to come through such a rut.

“There is no speculation,” said. Klopp. “It must be an external speculation because I don’t know about it, but maybe, I’m not involved in it anymore. There is no speculation right now. It is just the situation we are in.

“Yes, Darwin was definitely not happy missing that chance. He is, let me say was because that could have changed now, unlucky in so many situations where he is doing everything right and then the ball still doesn’t go in.

“That’s really tough for a young man, it’s really tough. He knows about expectations, he has big expectations on himself. That’s tough. And you have to go through this.

“There is no alternative than going through it. And that is what he is doing right now. We are trying to help him with everything we can, but in the end, you have to go through. Everybody has to go through this, it’s part of a footballer’s career. That’s all.”

Klopp continued at his press conference: “His problem is that he is that good that he is constantly in these moments and it’s so obvious. If he was a little bit less good, then he wouldn’t have chances and people would just say it is not great.

“Because he is that good, he is in these moments where he can finish it off but now he isn’t finishing it off in the moment. How many goals did he score? Oh, 18?

“I think he’s not too bad with numbers. 18 and 11 (in the league). They’re not bad numbers. It’s just because of his quality and constantly in these situations.

“Everybody is saying, ‘oh, not again!’ Because of our situation as a team where we had chances and didn’t score unfortunately, if somebody else had scored in that moment, it wouldn’t have felt as bad. That’s the situation. Nobody likes it but it’s part of a career.”