German journalist Christian Falk joined OTB AM on Wednesday to discuss the latest news regarding Thiago Alcântara’s move to Liverpool.
Thiago has been linked with the Reds since he first expressed his desire to leave Bayern Munich in July.
Since then, however, there has been very little movement from the powers that be in Merseyside to sign the 29-year-old.
“At the moment, everybody is waiting,” Falk said.
“There was contact between the clubs, but a concrete offer is not here.”
Former Norwegian international Jan Aage Fjortoft told OTB AM in August that Thiago is “100%” leaving Munich, but Falk is only 80% sure that he will land up in Anfield.
Liverpool have not made a concrete offer on Thiago as they are waiting for either the price to go down or for their income from transfers to come in, according to Falk.
“I think Liverpool is waiting for the money they get from transfers,” he said.
“They’re talking with [Georginio] Wijnaldum, they are talking with Barcelona about a transfer, they don’t know if he will stay or if he will go.
“It is the same situation with Bayern Munich. They didn’t make an offer for any other players because they’re just waiting until they know how much the fee for Thiago is, ‘what can we spend?’”
In the meantime, while Bayern get closer to the start of their training for the next season, Thiago remains on holiday awaiting his potential transfer.
“Yesterday, Bayern Munich had their COVID tests, the team is close to start training,” Falk said.
“He has an extra holiday, the manager allowed it, but that won’t take ages and then he’ll have to come back and have to train with the team.
“I think that’s not his idea.”
The former Barcelona midfielder has already said goodbye to a number of people in Munich, according to Falk, and he would be too proud to go back.
“[Thiago] wants a new challenge, and it will be very hard for [him] to come back; he said goodbye to so many players and employees of the club,” Falk said.
The Reds have already lost one of their potential signings during this transfer window, as they looked set to sign Timo Werner before Chelsea signed the deal first.
The Premier League champions had asked Werner’s then-club RB Leipzig for additional time before agreeing the deal, while Chelsea were ready to make the deal then and there.
Falk believes that a similar set of circumstances could play out with Thiago, if Liverpool do not act fast.
“So, if they don’t move for him, perhaps it is like [Timo] Werner, they hesitate too long and he goes to Chelsea,” he said.
“I think Thiago is not a player that is so expensive that [his transfer] depends on [game day revenue and losses].
“I think it is just a question on how the team will look like next year, and Jürgen Klopp needs a player like him, especially when Wijnaldum is going away.”
Barcelona could scoop Thiago?
Liverpool are not the only club that have expressed interest in signing the midfielder from Bayern.
English heavyweights Manchester United have shown a small amount of interest, although that signing is unlikely as United are still attempting to sign Jadon Sancho.
“Spending money is not so easy in this time, so I don’t know how much money [Manchester] United like to spend,” Falk said.
“They have problems to buy Sancho, so I don’t know if they have the money to pay for another defensive midfield player.”
Falk believes that the Reds’ biggest competitors for the signature of Thiago is his former club, Barcelona.
“We heard that [Barca’s] manager [Ronald] Koeman is not so keen on Thiago, but the board is thinking about getting him back,” Falk said.
“He is from Barcelona; he is a player that identifies with the Tiqui-taca.”
Falk believes that there is credibility to the rumours surrounding Thiago and his former club, as the players that he was competing with for a place in the team are no longer there.
“He moved away because there was Xavi, there was [Andrés] Iniesta, but these guys are not there anymore,” Falk said.
“He would be the perfect solution in his position, he is number 10 for the Spain team.”
Klopp’s German attitude
Liverpool’s manager Jürgen Klopp will be desperate to sign Thiago, as Falk believes that he is still feeling the effects of losing Werner to Chelsea.
“Indeed, there was a bit [of frustration] at the Werner deal,” he said.
But Falk does not think that Klopp will rush into spending money that the club does not have.
“Don’t forget that Jürgen Klopp is a German, and the clubs before were German clubs, and our managers know the philosophy: just spend the money that you have earned,” Falk said.
“He knows it from Dortmund, he knows it from Mainz, so he’s used to it.
“I am sure he will really be keen on Thiago and he would be very happy if he gets him, and he would be a little bit frustrated if they don’t get him.
“But in the end, he would accept it.”
As the transfer window is still open for almost another month, Falk thinks that the cost of players will reduce, and that is when Liverpool will strike.
“The problem for everybody now is that the league is starting very soon, and the transfer window is until October 5th, so they have a lot of time for poker games,” he said.
“Players are getting cheaper when time is running, so they have to wait.
“I don’t know what will happen if Liverpool don’t move.”