Dream Team bosses are itching to get their hands on the 2022/23 version of the UK’s best fantasy football game.
The official launch is close and in hope of providing some relief to the particular impatient gaffers out there, we’re leaking a handful of player prices over the next few days.
First up is Liverpool new boy Darwin Nunez.
The deal to bring the Uruguay international to Anfield may worth an estimated €100million but Dream Team managers can back him for £5.0m ahead of Game Week 1.
In the real world, £5million is pocket change where elite level football is concerned but given that Dream Team gaffers have a budget of £50million to construct their initial XI, backing Nunez would require an investment of 10% of all that’s available to them.
It’s a tempting price as it doesn’t put the 23-year-old among the most expensive assets in his position – you can expect the likes of Mohamed Salah and Harry Kane to be another bracket up.
And yet Nunez has the potential to be a top-tier performer this coming season.
He scored 26 goals in 28 league appearances for Benfica last term at a rate of one every 76.5 minutes – blimey.
The Premier League is likely to present a tougher test than the Portuguese top flight although Reds supporters have recently witnessed a remarkably quick transition from Luis Diaz in similar circumstances.
It’s also worth noting that Nunez scored six goals in 614 minutes of Champions League action in 2021/22, including two against Liverpool in the quarter-final legs.
At the most basic level, he’s a prolific striker who is joining one of the very best teams in world football.
Jurgen Klopp’s side dominate the vast majority of their games and so it’s practically guaranteed that every member of the selected front three will receive their fair share of chances in any given fixture.
Not only will he working in tandem with the likes of Salah and Diaz, but he can expect a wealth of service from Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson, a full-back pair who have provided an obscene number of assists in recent seasons – they registered 34 between them in 2021/22.
Nunez is tall, quick and technically proficient – it would be a huge surprise if he didn’t succeed under Klopp’s guidance.
But it’s perhaps not a clear case of ‘I need this guy in my team whatever the cost’ for Dream Team bosses.
Nunez is extremely right-footed and his underwhelming pressing numbers suggest some transformation will need to occur for him to fulfil the requirements expected of him as a Liverpool centre-forward.
The Uruguayan is untested in England and for every Luis Diaz and Bruno Fernandes who excelled from the get-go there are half a dozen examples of players who either needed considerable time to adjust or were outright defeated by the transition.
And where will Nunez start in the pecking order?
Salah is an automatic starter when fit and it seems Diaz is first-choice on the left flank, leaving the new arrival to battle it out with Diogo Jota through the middle.
The Portugal international has been excellent for the Reds since his transfer from Wolves in 2020.
Last season he scored 21 goals and provided eight assists in all competitions – notching a goal involvement every 123.2 minutes.
Those keen on Nunez ahead of Game Week 1 should at least consider the possibility that Klopp will select Salah-Diaz-Jota as his front three to take on Fulham at Craven Cottage on August 6th – team selection may be easy to predict closer to the time.
So that’s Nunez at £5.0m, keep an eye out for Erling Haaland’s starting price tomorrow…