Reaction'Outstanding' - Trent Alexander-Arnold hails Darwin Nunez
Trent Alexander-Arnold praised Darwin Nunez after another all-action display from the forward helped Liverpool beat Leicester City 2-1 at Anfield.
The livewire Uruguayan was an influential force as the Reds came from behind to record a fourth successive Premier League victory in their final match of 2022 on Friday.
Wout Faes scored two own goals to give Jürgen Klopp’s side an important three points in their first home fixture for almost seven weeks.
Nunez played a key role in Faes’ second own goal, the No.27 speeding clear and lifting a delicate finish over Danny Ward that struck the inside of the post before the Leicester defender skewed the ball into the net.
He has firmly established himself as a fans’ favourite since a summer move from Benfica and Alexander-Arnold has explained why he is equally as popular among his teammates.
Extended highlights: Liverpool 2-1 Leicester City
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The No.66 told Liverpoolfc.com: “I think I speak on behalf of all the lads: he’s been, I think, outstanding since he came in.
“People will judge him on his goals and that’s part of being a striker, that’s part of life. But I think he can keep walking off the pitch with his head held high because he is getting in positions that are really, really hurting the opposition.
“He’s such a threat, he’s getting in behind, he’s holding the ball up, he’s flicking balls on, he’s doing everything that the manager has asked of him. His pressing, his attitude, his desire, you can’t question any of it.
“You’ll get people who will say he’s missed a few chances and he's missed one-on-ones and maybe he should have tucked the second goal away, but he’s getting himself in those positions and when the goals do come I’m sure they will come like London buses! We’re just waiting for that but he’s a fantastic lad and he’s an outstanding player as well.”
Read on for the rest of our post-match interview with Alexander-Arnold...
On the Leicester game…
It wasn’t great at all, to be honest. I think as a team we are disappointed with how we performed but three points is three points and come the end of the season they’ll be important for sure. But it’s one of them, we’re not happy with how we’ve played and there is a lot to learn from today.
On the disappointment of falling behind to Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall’s early goal…
I think we definitely pride ourselves on our intensity, especially in the first 15 or 20 minutes, and that just wasn’t there today at all, to be honest. It was a slow, lethargic start to the game, the intensity wasn’t there, that’s what we are good at and we just haven’t brought that today. So, it’s one we need to think about as to why that’s happened, but no excuses. We got the three points in the end.
On the reasons behind the slow start…
I think potentially it’s almost like a new season has started [after the World Cup] and it’s very rare this early on in the season that you play two or three games in a week. But it’s the same for every team, Leicester had that intensity to start with and we didn’t. So it’s definitely one that we need to think about and it’s one that we need to make sure doesn’t happen again because we almost got punished for it today. We were just good enough to get the two goals really.
Press conferenceJürgen Klopp on Leicester win, Elliott and Robertson injuries and more. Jürgen Klopp reflected on the importance of Liverpool's 2-1 victory over Leicester City and provided updates on injuries to Harvey Elliott and Andy Robertson at his post-match press conference.
On the positive of grinding out a win…
One hundred per cent. That’s one thing that we can take away from this game: going behind against a good team and managing to win and see the game out as well, because they piled the pressure on, changed their system in the second half and really came at us and pressed us high. It wasn’t a pretty game at all but we got the job done and it was about getting over the line at the end.
On the run of four consecutive Premier League victories…
Definitely [we feel positive]. Like I said, three points is three points, we’ve put ourselves in a good position. [We’ll] keep chipping away and hoping that people drop points around us. We’re still not even halfway through the season so there are still a lot of games to play [and] a lot of things can happen. We found ourselves in quite a similar position last year, chasing [Manchester] City at this time of year [when we were] 10 or 11 points behind them. But people do drop points, no-one is going to go unbeaten or not drop any points from now until the end of the season. Hopefully it’s us who do that but it’s unlikely any team will so we’ve got to make sure we are in positions to pounce when teams drop points around us.