Summer signing Darwin Nunez scored at the King Power Stadium on Saturday as Liverpool beat Premier League champions Manchester City 3-1 and won the FA Community Shield.
The Uruguayan player, acquired from Benfica for an initial fee of €75m, made himself an instant fan favorite after capping a lively display from the bench with an injury-time goal to secure the first trophy of the season.
Despite being without Nunez in the first half, Liverpool struck quickly, with Trent Alexander-Arnold opening the scoring in the 21st minute. His first shot deflected Nathan Ake slightly off the head and hit the post.
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City’s Erling Haaland started his second game since joining Pep Guardiola’s side and missed two chances to equalize just before half-time.
Jurgen Klopp introduced new man Nunez from the bench after the hour and Liverpool continued to look dangerous going forward, with City desperate for an equaliser.
And while all eyes were on Haaland, it was another summer signing – Julian Alvarez – who leveled the game in the 70th minute.
The Argentina striker squeezed a shot past Adrian after Phil Foden took the ball from the Spanish goalkeeper. Alvarez’s goal was initially ruled out as his original deficit was ruled offside, but a lengthy VAR review ended with Craig Pawson overruling the decision.
But the goal didn’t keep City at eye level for long. Nunez pulled in a handball from Ruben Dias in the penalty area, which was eventually awarded as a penalty by VAR. Mohamed Salah put down the penalty with ease.
In stoppage time, victory was assured for Klopp’s side – and Nunez scored his goal. He nodded home past Ederson to give Liverpool a two-goal cushion and ensure a perfect start to his tenure at Anfield.
“Our season started today and it was important that we got off to a good start,” said Alexander-Arnold, who fully praised the punching power of 23-year-old Nunez.
“He won the penalty, scored a goal and looked very lively. He was signed to score goals and he showed today that he can do it,” he said.
“He’s a top player, a young player who’s ready to learn. He connects well with the lads. He came with a point that he could prove.”
Information from Reuters was used in this report.
https://www.espn.com/soccer/report?gameId=635246 Liverpool vs. Manchester City – Football Match Report – July 30, 2022