With a sensational hat-trick in last night’s UEFA Under-21 European Championship final, Thiago Alcântara secured his status as one of football’s brightest talents – and may have bought himself a move abroad in the process. According to FC Barcelona president, Sandro Rosell, Thiago’s buyout clause currently stands at €18 million – a bona fide bargain for some of Europe’s biggest clubs considering the immense potential that Thiago has demonstrated in recent years as a fringe member of this all-conquering Blaugrana squad – and as a result of this remarkably low buyout clause, it’s almost guaranteed that Barcelona are going to receive some offers for their talented midfielder.
Bayern Munich, Chelsea and Manchester City are just a few of the teams reportedly interested in securing Thiago’s signature – although it’s City’s rivals, Manchester United, who are believed to be in pole position. Despite Sir Alex Ferguson’s surprise retirement and the subsequent hiring of former Everton coach, David Moyes, the allure of a starting berth at Manchester United remains strong – and who could blame Thiago for leaving? Barcelona aside, Manchester United are probably the most successful club of the past five years and if Thiago can earn that starting berth in England, it’s possible that he may earn himself a place in Spain’s World Cup squad, as Vicente del Bosque’s side look to win the famous trophy for a second successive time.
So, while Gerard Piqué has pleaded with the club to persuade Thiago to stay, it may be too late. Has Thiago played his final game in a Blaugrana shirt?