LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, December 17, 2023: Liverpool's injured Thiago Alcântara before the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Manchester United FC at Anfield. The game ended in a goal-less draw. (Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Thiago ‘contacted’ with unlikely offer to join new Barcelona setup

As he leaves Liverpool on the expiry of his contract this summer, Thiago is reported to have been offered an unlikely role as part of Barcelona’s staff.

Thiago has departed Merseyside after four years, with the midfielder suffering a frustrating final season at Liverpool that brought just one appearance.

With no new contract offered, the 33-year-old has left along with Joel Matip, and the pair are now free to sign with other clubs.

Sides in Saudi Arabia, Spain and England have already been linked with offers to Thiago, but Spanish publication AS claim he is also attracting interest as a coach.

Barcelona announced their decision to sack Xavi on Friday – a month after persuading him to stay – with former Bayern Munich and Germany manager Hansi Flick set to take over.

It is claimed that the club are seeking to appoint an assistant “who knows German and Spanish perfectly and who acts as a direct link with the squad.”

That arriving coach would be “fundamental in coexistence in the locker room” and “very open to dialogue with the players.”

Technical director Deco is said to be targeting “a former player who is going to finish his career,” with Thiago, Marc Bartra and Javi Martinez held up as candidates.

Thiago was the first player contacted, the report states, though there is a “certain pessimism in the club” that he would take the job.

30.04.2011, Anoeta, San Sebastian, ESP, Primera Division, Real Sociedad vs FC Barcelona, im Bild FC Barcelona's Thiago Alcantara celebrates goal during La Liga match.April 30 ,2011. EXPA Pictures © 2011, PhotoCredit: EXPA/ Alterphotos/ Acero +++++ ATTENTION - OUT OF SPAIN / ESP +++++

If he were to consider the position, it could mean ending his playing career earlier than expected – though a player-coach role would be an interesting proposition.

The 33-year-old certainly fits the job description as he is fluent in Spanish and German, as well as English, Portuguese and Catalan, and boasts a strong affinity to Barcelona having come through their academy.

When Liverpool confirmed the release of Thiago – who was given a guard of honour after the season’s final game at Anfield – Jurgen Klopp suggested he would continue playing.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, May 18, 2024: Liverpool's Thiago Alcântara, Kostas Tsimikas and Mohamed Salah after the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Wolverhampton Wanderers FC at Anfield. (Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

“I know injuries have been a frustration for him and also for us but the level that he was able to play at when he was available was incredible,” the manager said.

“This is what I will remember.

“Now he will go in a new direction with his family and we can only wish them well.

“Wherever he plays next I would be happy to watch. An artist of the game who will only ever paint the most beautiful pictures.”