Thiago Alcantara has added another dimension to Liverpool, according to Jermaine Jenas, after the Spaniard played an odd role in the Reds’ 3-1 in over Newcastle United on Thursday.
He’s world-class. I don’t think that’s up for debate. But the former Bayern Munich star had the strangest game of his Liverpool career to date.
Within seven minutes, he had gifted the visitors the lead. He intercepted the cross into the box from Ryan Fraser and poorly redirected it to Jonjo Shelvey. Admittedly, the former Liverpool midfielder had a lot to do but, oh boy, did he do it.
The Newcastle no.8 whipped the ball across the goal to Alisson’s right, leaving the goalkeeper stranded. The score was 1-0 but Liverpool had no trouble getting back into the game and were 2-1 up just 18 minutes later. Goals from Diogo Jota and Mohamed Salah won the match while Trent Alexander-Arnold’s rocket sealed the points.
Thiago, however, ran the game from then on. He did give the ball away in a dangerous position again, which saw Allan Saint-Maximin bring a fantastic save out of Alisson.
But Thiago basically didn’t put a foot wrong after that. His passing was crisp and purposeful and he regularly broke the lines.
Speaking on BT Sport, Jermaine Jenas praised the Spaniard, who was once again operating in midfield of a high octane -2-4 which Jurgen Klopp has implemented recently. This saw Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain join the attack in possession and drop back into midfield when off the ball.
He said: “He’s added a different dimension to this Liverpool team. They’ve had passers in there before, but not like this. They’ve usually always depended much more on Trent Alexander-Arnold or Virgil van Dijk at the back.
“They can do it from the centre of the pitch with this guy now.”