There has been a lot of buzz in the short English Premier League offseason about a new forward signing that is set to take the league by storm for a title contender.
I will let everyone else ooze over what Erling Haaland is capable of doing at Manchester City and I will focus on the other top forward signing that can take the league by storm, and one that gained some eyes during Liverpool's Community Shield win over Manchester City.
Darwin Nunez signed for Liverpool from Benfica in the summer and he is expected to play a large role in the Reds' attack as a potential upgrade to Sadio Mane up top alongside Mohamed Salah.
Nunez burst on to the European club soccer scene over the last two seasons with Benfica, as he scored 11 goals between the UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League for the Portuguese side. The Uruguayan striker also banged in 26 goals in league play for Benfica.
Liverpool has a massive forward talent on its hands, and at the moment, Nunez carries a ton of value in two different betting markets.
Darwin Nunez To Win Golden Boot (+1400)
Darwin Nunez To Be Liverpool's Top Scorer (+400)
Darwin Nunez enters the EPL season fifth on the DraftKings odds board to win the Golden Boot.
Erling Haaland, Mohamed Salah, Harry Kane and Gabriel Jesus all sit in front of the new Liverpool striker for Golden Boot. Salah has better odds to be Liverpool's top scorer in the 2022-23 season.
Liverpool is once again expected to be locked in a title fight with Manchester City and the overall quality throughout Jurgen Klopp's side could make for some lopsided results throughout the season, starting with Saturday's trip to Craven Cottage to take on newly-promoted Fulham.
A year ago, Liverpool produced an expected goals total over two in 23 of 38 Premier League games. The Reds produced multiple goals in 30 of 38 games and scored four or more tallies on seven occasions.
Nunez was Liverpool's primary bit of transfer business. The Reds parted ways with Mane, who is now at Bayern Munich, and a bunch of fringe players during the offseason.
There will not be much change in Liverpool's lineup from the start of the EPL season, which should help Nunez assimilate to the team over his first few starts. It also helps that the Reds open with Fulham, Crystal Palace, Manchester United and Bournemouth. The next four contests are against Newcastle United, Everton, Wolverhampton Wanderers and Chelsea.
Liverpool's early-season league schedule allows Nunez plenty of time to get adjusted to his new role up top while scoring a few goals against some lesser opponents that are figuring things out over the first month or two of the season.
Liverpool plays Arsenal, Tottenham and Manchester City for the first time in October and November and the return fixtures do not happen until April. That is key for Nunez because he does not have to come back from the 2022 FIFA World Cup and go right into high stress games. The Reds could manage his workload over the holidays so that he is fresh for the stretch run of the title race.
Nunez has 52 league goals over the last three seasons. He played with Almeria in the second division in Spain for one season and then played with Benfica for the last two years. Nunez only scored six goals in his debut league campaign for Benfica, but he scored five goals in the UEFA Europa League.
Some critics may point to the six-goal league campaign in his first year at Benfica, or the upgrade to Premier League competition, as reasons why Nunez will not succeed right off the bat in his first season with Liverpool.
That argument can be countered right away by his performance in the Europa League two seasons ago and his performance in the Community Shield against Manchester City. Nunez scored a goal and drew a penalty in the annual kickoff match. Haaland struggled in that match, but he is expected to get going for City as well.
Nunez will likely have to score at least 20 goals in debut season for Liverpool, but the early returns show that he is getting along well inside the Liverpool squad and he should combine with Salah for many attacking chances.
Of course, these bets will be threatened by Salah's presence in front of goal, but the 23-year-old striker should have close to as many chances as the Egyptian this season. After all, Liverpool had 370 shots on target last season across all competitions and Salah can't be on the end of every chance.
I expect Liverpool to give Nunez some chances to get going early against weaker opposition, and if that is the case, he and Salah could be flying in the buildup to the World Cup, where Nunez could be contender for the Golden Boot depending on how far Uruguay goes.