Liverpool have a lot of top players in their squad, but only a few come close to complementing each other the way Thiago and Fabinho do.
Fabinho, a Brazil international, and Thiago, an Italy-born Spaniard born to Brazilian parents, are currently forming the strongest midfield duo in the Premier League.
While we are finally getting a good look at them together, we caught our first glimpse last season. The Reds were facing the disastrous possibility of ending the season outside the top four. Then Fabinho returned to the side, unlocking Thiago’s creative and attacking strengths.
It resulted in the former Bayern Munich star’s first goal for the club and a massive upturn in form, as Jurgen Klopp’s Mentality Monsters fought their way to an unlikely third-place finish above eventual Champions League winners Chelsea.
Both midfielders have the steel and defensive work rate to ensure that the Liverpool back four is well protected on the counter-attack. That’s where Klopp’s side is most vulnerable and they both accepted yellow cards happily, committing textbook professional fouls against Wolves.
Stopping the likes of Adama Traore, Raul Jimenez and Hwang Hee-Chan on the break is a difficult task. Thiago and Fabinho did it almost perfectly every time, with Wolves registering just one shot on target throughout the game.
I’d love to see Thiago and Fabinho joined in midfield by Naby Keita, as it would be Liverpool’s best counter-pressing unit by some margin. That said, Jordan Henderson was very good against Everton, even if he was quite poor last time out.
The best way to look at it is to recognise that Jurgen Klopp is blessed with several top midfielders. It is just a pity we haven’t seen them fit at the same time for a real length of time.
If Thiago and Fabinho stay fit, Liverpool will have a lot of control and threat in games this season.