Michael Owen singled out the “staggering” Thiago Alcantara for special praise after the midfielder produced another fine performance in Liverpool FC’s 2-0 win over Villarreal on Wednesday night.
The Spain international has been earning lots of praise for his displays for Jurgen Klopp’s team lately and he was in especially good form during the club’s 4-0 victory over Manchester United at Anfield earlier in the month.
Thiago played the full 90 minutes on Merseyside on Wednesday night as he helped Liverpool FC to claim a 2-0 home victory over Villarreal to take a big stride towards reaching the Champions League final.
The midfielder finished Wednesday’s game with a pass accuracy rate of 96 per cent, and he completed more than 100 passes for Jurgen Klopp’s men against the Spanish side.
And former Liverpool FC star Owen was highly impressed by what he saw from Thiago once again on Wednesday night.
Speaking on BT Sport after the game, Owen said of Thiago: “There were lots of questions, lots of people who thought he was a great player.
“I don’t think there was anyone who ever doubted his quality they did doubt if they could fit into this team. I think naturally he’s a number six but a number six who is a playmaker, almost like a quarter-back.
“But Liverpool don’t really play like that. They like a more defensive player in there like a Fabinho but this guy especially in the last month has just come into his own he is literally dictating the play.
“His passing accuracy is staggering – it was 96 per cent [tonight] I’m told and things like this he’s adding to his game in recent weeks.”
Former Manchester United star Rio Ferdinand also chimed in to praise the “intelligence” of the former FC Barcelona star.
Ferdinand said on BT Sport: “He’s an intelligent guy, I’m fortunate enough to have spent time with him here and there.
“Intelligence is the thing that strikes you straight off the pitch, but on the pitch it is there for everyone to see. It’s almost like he’s practicing and testing things out on this stage and it almost always comes off.”
Meanwhile, Thiago himself – who was named as the man of the match for his display on Wednesday night – warned his team-mates to expect a tough encounter in the return leg in Spain on Tuesday night next week.
Thiago said: “It will be hard there, I know this stadium before because of my time at Barcelona but we don’t have time to think about the game there, we have to think about our game at the weekend [against Newcastle United], so that’s all for us.”
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Source: Sport Review