Liverpool striker Darwin Nunez deserves a five-match ban for head-butting Crystal Palace's Joachim Anderson in his team's 1-1 draw on Monday (August 15), according to talkSPORT pundit Jason Cundy.
The Reds took on the Eagles following a hard-fought 2-2 draw against Fulham in their opening Premier League game. Nunez came on as a substitute against the Cottagers but was handed a start against Palace at Anfield.
Liverpool trailed through a 32nd-minute Wilfried Zaha goal, with their front three of Mohamed Salah, Nunez, and Luis Diaz looking lackluster in the opening hour. Their task was made even harder when Nunez head-butted Andersen and got himself sent off.
The Uruguay international was provoked by the Danish centre-back inside the Palace box when the ball was out of play. Nunez turned around and head-butted Andersen, who proceeded to fall to the ground.
"The head-butt from Nunez, I personally think he'll get more than three, I think he'll end up with a bigger ban. What he did tonight was a disgrace. Absolute disgrace. I think he should get a five-match ban. Violent conduct right there."
Cundy called Nunez's actions an assault on Andersen, who, in his opinion, could have broken his nose as a result and said:
"Headbutting someone is an assault, that is an assault. He headbutted him. That to me is more than three games. What you saw him do could've broken Andersen's nose."
Diaz managed to score the equalizer just four minutes after the Reds were reduced to 10 men. As things stand, Nunez is set to miss Liverpool's next three Premier League games against Manchester United, Bournemouth, and Newcastle United.
How Liverpool could line up in attack against Manchester United
From what transpired in the game, it is unlikely that Nunez's ban will be overturned. That leaves manager Jurgen Klopp with a huge selection headache for the Premier League clash against the Red Devils on Monday, August 22.
Diogo Jota and Roberto Firmino are sidelined due to their respective injury issues and are unlikely to return in time to start against United. In such a situation, the German manager could have to play Salah down the middle, with Diaz and one of Harvey Elliott and Fabio Carvalho on the flanks.
The Portuguese playmaker came on as a substitute against Palace in the 79th minute and played in a central role in attack. However, it remains unlikely that Klopp will hand Carvalho the task of starting out of position as a centre-forward against the Red Devils.