Saturday, April 20, 2013

MALAYSIA'S FOOTBALL : Fans Expect More Magic From Senor Nunez

Leonel Nunez made an impressive debut for Johor Darul Takzim and Mustapha "El Loco" Kamaruddin thinks that with time, he will be a force to be reckoned with

Some fans sniggered when Johor Darul Takzim's newly-hired attacker Leonel Nunez took the field at the half hour mark as a substitute in their FA Cup semi-final against Selangor at the Shah Alam Stadium last night.

Can't really blame these sceptical fans.
Nunez looked over-weight and they felt he could not assist Darul Takzim in their bid to turn the table on Selangor - after losing the first leg 2-1 at the Larkin Stadium.

He was not 100 per cent fit, too. Remember ... he only arrived in Johor Bahru last weekend and has yet to settle down with the local conditions.

Instead, the 28-year-old Nunez had a dream debut with the Southern Tigers when he struck two stunning goals to steer Fandi Ahmad's men to a thrilling 2-1 win.

This forced the match into extra time as the teams were tied at 3-3 on aggregate. And then the penalty shootout followed, in which Darul Takzim won 4-2 to book a place in the last four.

Nunez converted his spot-kick with ease despite struggling with his fitness where he could hardly walk as he was already exahausted. Like they say, he was running out of steam.

Overall, Nunez stole the show with his effective and delightful display to entertain those in attendence and also those watching on TV.

The Argentine, a replacement for fans' former favourite Dani Guiza, proved he is more than capable of playing a key role for Darul Takzim in their aim for honours this season.

Selangor, who also performed well on their part to make the contest exciting, found it rather difficult to cope with  Nunez.

Basically, Nunez operated along the left flank but also moved to the center, sometimes pulling up from from deep. He was not only helping out the attack, but he put on a tough show in with some defensive moves as well.

And he was capable of taking corners too - remember the one which he curled towards goal.

For the record, he once scored direct from a corner kick while playing for Independiente in 2010 against his first club Argentinos Juniors.

The next thing to look out for is his scissor kick. He is good in that aspect as well.

Back to the goals Nunez scored on Tuesday. The executions for both were brilliant and packed with power which left Selangor goalkeeper Norazlan Razali helpless.

And the first was from his right foot, and the second from the left. This means, he is deadly with both feet when it comes to taking shots.

And at standing at six feet tall, Nunez should be handy with the headers as well.

He has good attacking qualities and that is exemplified by his ability to execute defence-splitting passes.
This is not surprising though - teams like Argentinos Juniors, Olympiacos, Independiente and Bursapor would not have signed Nunez, prior to his stint with Darul Takzim, if he is not a capable player.

Now Nunez is poised to build up a lethal combination upfront for Darul Takzim with interesting Brazilian midfielder Andre Silva and Malaysia international striker Norsharul Idlan Talaha.

They need some time though.

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