Former Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Jermaine Jenas has offered up some advice for Liverpool star Thiago Alcantara.
The Spaniard has been one of the Reds more promising players when building attacks this season, but a lack of composure in defence has warranted criticism of the summer signing.
Speaking to BBC’s Match of the Day, Jenas said it’s clear to him there are things Thiago is doing that he shouldn’t.
“I think it was clear [against Leicester City] when they’re trying to play this high press, for me, Thiago was probably a really weak component without the ball for them,” the former Spurs man said.
“It’s just seems quite clear to me that he’s doing things that maybe he shouldn’t be doing.
“I think Jurgen Klopp mentioned about the last goal really upsetting him. There’s Thiago and [Ozan] Kabak and [Gini] Wijnaldum right next to Harvey Barnes. For some reason Thiago has decided, ‘I’m just not going to mark him’.
“Whether it’s a legs thing, whether he’s not getting up to the pace of the game, that is just not good enough.”
To be fair, we at EOTK don’t believe anyone is void of criticism, and if someone is going to pull apart Thiago’s game, then it would be his defensive side that lets him down.
While the Spaniard clearly isn’t the best tackler in the world, we’d argue he wouldn’t be tasked with as much defending in normal circumstances.
With a fully fit team, Liverpool put out Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez in defence and have Fabinho anchoring the midfield, with Jordan Henderson pressing a little higher up.
In that scenario, Thiago can roam a little more freely and play his game – as rightly brought up by Jenas, the Spaniard is at his best when his team has the ball.