Thiago Alcantara has chosen to move to Bayern Munich instead of Manchester United claimed journalist Juanmo Castano on Spanish radio station COPE tonight.
He also claimed that Thiago rejected offers from United and Real Madrid to join Munich on a €4 million a year deal, and that Pep Guardiola convinced the 22-year-old to join on the grounds that Javi Martinez would be pushed back to centre back to allow Thiago free reign over the central midfield role alongside Schweinsteiger.
“First, we have been told that Thiago Alcantara’s future is not at Barca,” he told COPE.
“Second, we have been told the club he has chosen. The club Thiago has chosen is Bayern Munich.
“This is from a very credible source, a source that is, lets say, directly linked to the footballer.
Yesterday, SPORT claimed that Thiago had turned down an offer from Madrid and these follow up reports certainly follow that chain of thought.
Last year, Munich’s evolved tika-taka style of football embraced a physical side that Barcelona lacked and they were unstoppable, so it would seem strange that Guardiola would be willing to throw away a philosophy that won the treble just to accommodate Thiago in the side.
In the big games, he’d certainly be inclined to push Thiago to the bench to allow Martinez and Schweinsteiger, who were the best central midfield partnership last year, to play alongside each other.
If Thiago really does hold guaranteed game time as his main priority for leaving Barcelona, then joining Munich ahead of United would make no sense.
At Old Trafford, he would have a chance to make the midfield his own. The fact that we are crying out for a player of his ilk allows him to make his mark instantly but at Munich, he would be fighting for a position just like he is currently at Barcelona which wouldn’t put him in a better position if he wanted to force his way into Del Bosque’s Spain for Brazil 2014.