Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has been warned that his antics on the touchline could be having a negative effect on Darwin Nunez as the Reds’ striker gets up to speed in the Premier League. The Uruguayan has had a mixed start to life at Anfield, having scored six times but he has also missed some big chances and was sent off for a headbutt on Crystal Palace defender Joachim Anderson.
Klopp has been criticised for his actions during Liverpool games, as he was sent off during his side’s 1-0 win over Manchester City in October but avoided a touchline ban. The German boss was fined £30,000 by the FA after admitting that he went “over the top” when he appeared to shout in the face of linesman Gary Beswick for not awarding a foul on Mohamed Salah.
Klopp has been known to be animated when his side are playing and wears his heart on his sleeve, but he has been told that his personality in the dugout could be setting the wrong example for Nunez by former Arsenal midfielder Stewart Robson. “He [Nunez] can be a top-class striker but he has got to calm his attitude,” Robson told ESPN.
“But then you have got a manager on the sidelines that is going mad every five minutes so he’s not a great example to the player himself. Darwin Nunez has got to calm himself down, be the top player that he can be, and I am sure he will be a success at Liverpool.”
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Former Chelsea striker Chris Sutton claimed that Klopp deserved up to a ten-match ban for his outburst at the officials. “Klopp will be on the touchline against West Ham tonight and that’s wrong,” Sutton wrote in the Daily Mail.
“If we want to stamp out this sort of behaviour, immediate bans are a must. They should miss three games, six games, maybe even ten if we truly want to drive home that this behaviour is unacceptable.”
Nunez has at times looked raw and unpolished during his start to life at Liverpool, but Klopp has been impressed with the striker following his goal off the bench against Napoli on Tuesday.
“Absolutely good,” Klopp said when asked about Nunez. “In these games for us it was not a game for massive rotation, because of the situation, but a little bit we had to and that is why we didn’t start all three [of Nunez, Salah and Roberto Firmino].
“We had to see how we got through the game and I thought Curtis [Jones] did really well in an unfamiliar position for him. He did really well and was involved in the game and then when you can bring on a fresh player with the quality of Darwin is very helpful. I’m really happy about that.”