Well-respected journalist James Pearce believes that Liverpool dearly missed Thiago Alcantara during their 1-1 draw against Fulham yesterday.
Pearce mourns Thiago absence
The 29-year-old has been missing from the Reds’ squad since their 2-2 draw against Everton back in October, where the Spaniard was on the end of a crunching tackle from Richarlison, one which caused a serious knee injury.
Thiago has played just 135 minutes of football since his £20m move from Bayern Munich in the summer but Liverpool still find themselves joint-top of the Premier League table with Tottenham after the first 12 games of the season (via BBC Sport).
The two-time Champions League winner has his fans. Teammate Georginio Wijnaldum described him as “unbelievable” when his signing was announced (via the club’s official website). Unfortunately for the Dutchman, he has not had much of an opportunity to feature alongside Thiago.
Liverpool were not at the races at Craven Cottage. Mohamed Salah’s second-half penalty cancelled out Bobby Decordova-Reid’s opener and post-game, manager Jurgen Klopp admitted that his team were not good enough to claim all three points.
Replying to a fan on The Athletic’s Q&A session, Pearce named Liverpool’s flagship summer signing as the player that Klopp’s team could have done with.
“Really missed Thiago today,” he said. “Crying out for his creative spark.”
Transfer Tavern Verdict
Pearce is right. Liverpool could really have done with someone in the middle with that sort of ability in his locker, particularly when Jordan Henderson had to fill in at centre-back after an injury to Joel Matip.
The Reds have no established centre-halves available for selection at the moment, which could mean that two of Klopp’s most talented midfielders will have to form a defensive pairing against the league leaders, or Nat Phillips may need to play against a high-flying Tottenham attack.
This is terrible timing with a huge game around the corner. With Thiago not due back until the New Year, Klopp has some serious thinking to do once the transfer window opens.
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