Neville lauds Scholes-like Liverpool star’s ‘calm and peace’

Will Ford
Gary Neville Saka
Gary Neville Saka

Gary Neville has hailed Liverpool midfielder Thiago Alcantara for his performance on Sunday.

The Spaniard was brought into Jurgen Klopp’s side as they brushed Leeds aside in a 3-0 victory at Elland Road.

Thiago has struggled to make an impact following his arrival from Bayern Munich for £20million in the summer of 2020.

READ MORE: Is free-flowing game worth cost of injuries like Harvey Elliott’s?

His assist on Sunday was his first in a Liverpool shirt and it was perhaps his best performance for Klopp’s side – he’s a winner this week.

And Neville was impressed by the 30-year-old, claiming his “calm and peace” reminded him of his former Manchester United teammate Paul Scholes in a “frantic” game.

Neville told his podcast: “It reminded me of Scholes at Anfield when the game was so frantic but all of a sudden there was a small guy in the middle of the pitch who’d just put his foot on it and you’d think it’s calm and peace.

“What Thiago did today was what he was brought in to do.”

Liverpool are in third place in the league, level on points with Chelsea in second and United in first, and look to be finding form close to that of their Champions League and Premier League winning campaigns.

Neville has previously questioned whether Klopp’s side have the quality and depth to compete on all fronts this season, but admitted ahead of the Leeds game that he has been proved wrong.

“I think it was three or four years ago when I said I didn’t think they would be able to compete in the Champions League and the league and they proved me wrong”, he told Sky Sports.

“Because of the way they play, Liverpool, the fact that they haven’t got a massively strong squad in terms of loads of depth, and the difference between the first eleven and below that is quite big, I thought they would struggle.

“They’ve proven over the years that they can handle it. I don’t see an issue for them. I think this [Leeds] game suits them today, it’s a really good game to play.”