Mon, 28 Sep 2020

Feature: Bayern's Thiago ready for last hurrah

05 Aug 2020, 02:44 GMT+10

BERLIN, Aug. 4 (Xinhua) -- Thiago Alcantara's future might still be uncertain as the 29-year-old announced he would leave Bayern Munich this summer.

On the contrary, the mood of the Spanish midfielder currently couldn't be better, ahead of what is to be his last service for the Bavarian side he joined seven years ago.

Surprisingly, Thiago seems a vital part of the reigning German champions' attempt to win this season's Champions League, even after being downgraded to a substitute as Joshua Kimmich and Leon Goretzka captured the club's midfield positions.

After an injury to right-back Benjamin Pavard, Bayern coach Hansi Flick has been forced to move Kimmich to the full-back position, freeing a space for the former Barcelona star in midfield.

Despite his intention to leave the club this summer, the 37-cap midfield impresario seems comfortable delivering his last act for Bayern, and wants to use this unexpected chance to attract possible interest.

Latest reports suggest that Paris Saint Germain have joined the list of suitors that is said to include 2019 Champions League winners Liverpool.

According to French media reports, Paris have offered 30 million euros for Thiago.

Bayern officials have avoided definitive statements regarding possible negotiations with other clubs, but talk of the Spaniard in glowing terms.

In the side's final warm-up game before crossing swords with Premier League club Chelsea in the second leg of their last-16 tie, Thiago gave evidence of his perfect setting as he helped Bayern beat French side Olympique Marseille 1-0.

Bayern chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge called him a fine character and praised his world-class quality.

Coach Flick said Thiago is in the best shape, allowing the team to deal with significant changes without losing quality. "There hasn't been a drop in performance with him. We are happy to have him around," the head coach commented.

Flick added that Thiago is an extremely hard-working performer, who has used the turbulent times of restricted training due to the COVID-19 outbreak for "a lot of extra work".

Star striker Thomas Muller spoke of a painful loss if Thiago does depart after the Champions League concludes.

"The youngsters are extremely hungry for success, and the established ones want to prove their skills once more," Muller said.

Meanwhile, German media spoke about Thiago's firm intention to create a stunning farewell after seven Bundesliga titles in Bayern's shirt.

A few weeks ago, Thiago rejected Bayern's offer to extend his contract and told the club he is ready to explore new pastures and add a new chapter to his career.

At present, the Spaniard is avoiding public statements, instead plunging headlong into Bayern's final preparations in advance of the tie against Chelsea.

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