Liverpool midfielder Thiago Alcantara has come in for some criticism in recent weeks but one player who has experienced playing against him this season, West Ham’s Declan Rice, says it was a humbling experience.
The England international, who has been linked with Chelsea and Manchester United in recent months, says he could not get near to Thiago in the Reds’ 3-1 win over the Hammers at the end of last month:
“When I played against Thiago the other day for Liverpool, obviously he is a holding midfielder, it was a big lesson. Because he ran the game. The ball was like on a string. It was like he dictated the tempo of the game and he has been there and done it.”
There is no doubt about Thiago’s quality. He is a world-class player but there have been some concerns regarding his adaptation to life in the Premier League.
His tackling, in particular, has been a problem, with the 29-year-old going to ground too easily and picking up needless bookings. He was at fault for giving away the free-kick for Leicester‘s first goal at the weekend.
Even so, as Rice points out, he offers so much when in possession of the ball and it will be hoped he can help get Liverpool’s season back on track in upcoming fixtures.