Thiago demonstrates his class during 17-minute cameo vs Newcastle United

Thiago Alcantara was only on the pitch for 17 minutes against Newcastle United but his influence on the game was significant and highlights what fans have missed out on.

The Spaniard made just his third appearance for Liverpool since signing in the summer.

He has spent 65 days on the sidelines since moving to Merseyside if you include his two-week COVID isolation period.

NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 30: Thiago Alcantara of Liverpool looks on during the Premier League match between Newcastle United and Liverpool at St. James’ Park on December 30, 2020 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England. The match will be played without fans, behind closed doors as a Covid-19 precaution. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED BY PETER POWELL/GETTY IMAGES.

His pass accuracy was 91% and he managed 23 passes in his short cameo with more impact than skipper Jordan Henderson.

The former Sunderland man was all over the place with his passing as he looked to force a goal.

Newcastle frustrated Liverpool in the same way that Fulham, Brighton and Wes Brom did. In these games, Klopp’s side scored a grand total of three goals after scoring seven against Crystal Palace.

NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 30: Jurgen Klopp, Manager of Liverpool is interviewed prior to the Premier League match between Newcastle United and Liverpool at St. James’ Park on December 30, 2020 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED BY OWEN HUMPHREYS – POOL/GETTY IMAGES.

Having Thiago back in the side in January will make a big difference especially with Naby Keita out injured once again.

The former Bayern Munich midfielder has the ability to break the lines which the likes of Henderson, James Milner and Curtis Jones failed to do last night.

At the end of the day, had Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino made the most of their chances, Liverpool would have scraped a win on a difficult night on Tyneside.

Michael Mongie
Football Central Media Group founder, owner and editor.

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