Danny Murphy says Thiago is the ‘nearest thing to Xavi’ after the Liverpool midfielder impressed on his debut in the 2-0 win over Chelsea.
Thiago made the £25 million switch from Bayern Munich to Anfield last week off the back of winning seven Bundesliga titles at the German club.
The Spain international earned his first appearance for the Reds against Chelsea, coming on as a substitute for Jordan Henderson at half-time.
Thiago conceded a penalty for a clumsy tackle on Timo Werner, but showed flashes of his brilliant passing range.
He marked his debut by posting an impressive tally of 75 completed passes, which is the most achieved by a player featuring for 45 or less minutes since 2003, when Premier League passing data started to be collected.
Former Liverpool midfielder Murphy believes the 29-year-old, who came through Barcelona’s La Masia academy, is the closest thing to Barca and Spain icon Xavi in terms of his efficient recycling of the ball.
‘He moves the ball so quickly, he doesn’t dwell on the ball even when other players aren’t around him,’ Murphy told BBC Match of the Day 2.
‘He is the nearest thing to Xavi, that’s why he didn’t get in the team, obviously, they had [Andres] Iniesta and [Sergio] Busquets.
‘His awareness and quickness of passing and variation of passing is going to add more quality to that Liverpool midfield.’