The biggest transfer saga of the summer so far has reached a conclusion as Thiago Alcantara will play for Bayern Munich next season his club FC Barcelona has officially confirmed.
A statement from Barcelona said:
“FC Barcelona and Bayern Munich have agreed to terms for Thiago Alcántara. The German club will pay a fee of 25 million euros for the midfielder.
“The agreement also stipulates that a friendly will be played between the two teams in the next four years. The 22-year-old leaves the Blaugrana after playing for the first team for two seasons.”
Thiago’s move is hardly surprising. As soon as Pep Guardiola became the first to officially declare his interest in the player by lauding him as the only one he wanted to sign this season, the writing was on the wall.
It’s a romantic reunion and one that Thiago will be eager to rekindle. In the 2011/12 season, he played 45 times under Guardiola and will be hoping to replicate that at Munich.
But given his prerogative of guaranteed first team football to try and force his way into Spain’s squad for 2014’s World Cup in Brazil, he is placing a lot of faith in Guardiola who suggested that Martinez will be forced back into central defence to allow for Thiago.
It isn’t just with Martinez that the 22-year-old will be in competition with thanks to the likes of Muller, Kroos, Gotze, Schweinsteiger and Luis Gustavo all viable alternatives in midfield, so Thiago certainly has his work cut out to secure a first team spot every week.
At United, he would of been all-but-guaranteed a starting spot in every important game alongside Michael Carrick given our midfield woes but he obviously felt that he couldn’t turn down last year’s treble winners.
You can’t begrudge Thiago moving to Munich given his links with Guardiola but it certainly hurts to miss out on another midfielder especially given his potential to be one of the world’s best in the next few years.
David Moyes confirmed that Thiago wasn’t his priority and that much is evident now but at least the Scot knows his squad is short in midfield.
On paper, Thiago’s signing was perfect but good luck to him at Munich. I can’t see how he will get more game time in Bavaria than Manchester but he sees differently which is all that matters.
Photo: FC Barcelona