Photo by Michael Regan - UEFA/UEFA via Getty Images

Liverpool target Thiago produced a masterclass against Barcelona

Liverpool and their reported pursuit of Thiago Alcantara has been the most talked-about transfer possibility for some time now and the Spaniard’s performance against his former club Barcelona demonstrated why there is such a buzz surrounding the Bayern Munich midfielder.

Barcelona’s Spanish defender Jordi Alba (R) challenges Bayern Munich’s Spanish midfielder Thiago Alcantara during the UEFA Champions League quarter-final football match between Barcelona and Bayern Munich at the Luz stadium in Lisbon on August 14, 2020. (Photo by Rafael Marchante / POOL / AFP) (Photo by RAFAEL MARCHANTE/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

Thiago, 29, produced a masterclass in midfield as Bayern romped to a stunning 8-2 victory against Barcelona to secure their passage to the Champions League semi-finals.

According to WhoScored, Thiago had a pass accuracy completion rate of 96%, took 84 touches, attempted three dribbles, and made one tackle and one interception.

No player on the pitch was as clinical in possession nor took as many touches with the ball as Thiago who delivered a timely reminder to his former team that he is among one of the best midfielders in world football.

Only teammate Leon Goretzka was able to boast a better pass success rate (98 per cent) than Thiago although out of the 49 per cent possession Bayern had of the ball, Thiago contributed to 7.7 per cent of that alone.

Subscribe to Rousing The Kop TV now

Barcelona’s Argentinian forward Lionel Messi (C) challenges Bayern Munich’s Spanish midfielder Thiago Alcantara (R) and Bayern Munich’s Polish forward Robert Lewandowski during the UEFA Champions League quarter-final football match between Barcelona and Bayern Munich at the Luz stadium in Lisbon on August 14, 2020. (Photo by Rafael Marchante / POOL / AFP) (Photo by RAFAEL MARCHANTE/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

 

Thiago also had more touches of the ball than any player on the pitch and remarkably completed 71 passes of the 74 attempted.

He was utterly irresistible alongside Goretzka in the middle of the park and Thiago’s ability to utilise the ball in tight areas were the blueprints for a number of Bayern counter-attacks that directly led to goals.

None of his Bayern teammates came within touching distance of Thiago in terms of accurate passes (71) with David Alaba coming second with 47.

On a night where Bayern blew Barcelona out of the water, it was Thiago who set the tempo of the match from start to finish.

It was encouraging to see Thiago produce the goods in against the highest calibre of opposition – although that will certainly be questioned following the gulf in quality between the two teams.

Thiago won the Champions League with Barcelona back in 2011 and it is the only trophy that still eludes the Bayern maestro since he signed in 2013.

It could be the perfect send-off to a seven-year spell at the Allianz Arena after Thiago made it publically clear he feels he is ready for a new challenge.

According to respected journalist and transfer guru Fabrizio Romano, Liverpool have begun contact with Bayern and negotiations are in the inaugural stages.

His performance against Barcelona demonstrated why he is among the elite of Europe’s best midfielders and was a timely reminder of why Liverpool have persistently been linked with a move.

Have something to tell us about this article?
Let us know