Liverpool midfielder, Thiago Alcantara is set to miss out on league action in August after having to leave the game against Fulham in the second half due to an injury.
Thiago’s injury seems to be a recurring theme and now again, the central midfielder is reportedly out for six weeks after picking up a hamstring injury against Fulham on Saturday.
Potential games that Thiago Alcantara could miss due to hamstring injury— VBET News (@VBETnews) August 9, 2022
Crystal Palace – H
Manchester United – A
Bournemouth – H
Newcastle – H
Everton – A
Wolves – H
Champions League matchday 1
Champions League matchday 2
Chelsea – A pic.twitter.com/TA7LBtA4Um
The Spanish international plays a key role in Klopp’s fluent, fast-paced football. He missed quite several games last season including the Carabao cup final at Wembley which alludes to the emphasis on the arrival of Carvalho and the emergence of Harvey Elliot.
Taking a deep dive into Thiago’s injury history, we see that this is not uncommon for the former Bayern midfielder. During his seven seasons in Bavaria, he played over 30 league games just once owing to all the niggling injuries he picked up at one point or another during his spell at the club, and at age 31, he won’t be a long-term solution for Liverpool’s midfield.
The question to be asked is; who can replicate Thiago’s midfield prowess? The short term answer is in Catalunya in the shape of his Spanish teammate, Sergio Busquets and the potential long term solution is Arthur Melo of Juventus. Pulling either of those two is simply not going to happen but never say never these days.
The 31-year-old is a unique deep-lying playmaker with exceptional technical attributes that compensate for his lack of pace. This is the precise reason Thiago Alcantara excels in a predominantly rapid side like Liverpool. Fabinho is the closest player to Thiago in terms of skillset hence, the Brazilian’s presence in the middle of the park will certainly help to reduce the impact of the injury. However, it’s not a one-man job.
Liverpool with Thiago starting in the PL last season:— Joel Rabinowitz (@joel_archie) August 7, 2022
W15 D2 L0 // 47/51 pts // 2.76 PPG (105pt pace) // 88% wins
Without Thiago starting:
W13 D6 L2 // 45/62 pts // 2.14 PPG (81pt pace) // 62% wins
The good news for Liverpool is that the transfer window is still open and a loan deal will make a lot of sense to fill in the gaps while the Spaniard is on the sidelines. The absence of Alex Oxlade Chamberlain and Curtis Jones will also necessitate at least one more midfield addition.
“This isn’t a good situation. I don’t like it at all. We have to see how we react on that, but for sure not panic,” Klopp said after Thiago Alcantara left the game against Fulham injured.
How can Liverpool cope without Thiago Alcantara?
The most feasible but unlikely solution is a switch to a 4-2-3-1 formation with Naby Keita and Fabinho acting as a double pivot behind a front four of Fabio Carvalho, Mo Salah, Diaz and Nunez with Fabio just ahead of the Keita – Fabinho partnership. Firmino could also be deployed just behind Nunez as well.
This way, The Reds can have enough bodies in the middle of the park whilst retaining their ferocious pace and power up front.
Regardless of whatever plan B Klopp decides to employ, one thing is key and that is Liverpool must come up with a long-term solution for the injury-prone midfielder heading into the bedtime of his glorious career.
With no further complications, Thiago Alcantara is set to make his Premier League return at Stamford Bridge on September 18th.