Nunez was the top scorer in Portugal's top flight in the 2021-22 season and scored 34 goals in all competitions for Benfica, including goals in both legs of the club's Champions League quarter-final defeat by Liverpool.

Nunez scored 26 goals in 28 league appearances last season in Portugal.
Nunez scored 26 goals in 28 league appearances last season in Portugal. (AFP)

Liverpool have reached a deal with Benfica to buy the Uruguay striker Darwin Nunez for an initial $78 million, the Portuguese club said.

The transfer could eventually rise to $104 million, Benfica said in a statement on Monday, eclipsing Liverpool’s club-record $78 million paid to Southampton for Dutch centre-back Virgil van Dijk in 2018.

Nunez scored 26 goals in 28 league appearances last season in Portugal.

The 22-year-old, who was left out of Uruguay’s squad for Saturday’s 5-0 friendly victory over Panama, was expected to begin a medical which could take two days to complete.

Six-year contract

Personal terms are not anticipated to be a problem, with the player having expressed his desire to play for Reds manager Jurgen Klopp despite interest from Manchester United.

Nunez is set to sign a reported six-year contract with Premier League and Champions League runners-up Liverpool, who have been in talks with Benfica for several weeks.

He netted in both legs of Benfica’s Champions League quarter-final defeat against Liverpool in April, earning praise from Klopp.

Nunez is likely to arrive at Anfield as a direct replacement for Sadio Mane after Bayern Munich stepped up their pursuit of the Senegal forward.

Liverpool have rejected two offers from the Bundesliga champions and are holding out for a fee in excess of £40 million for Mane, who has one year left on his contract.

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Source: TRTWorld and agencies