Nobody has to explain to Thiago how serious covid-19 is. The virus struck him back in October, and by no means lightly. Now, however, the Spaniard of Brazilian heritage is learning to live with it, preparing to help La Roja fight for Euro 2020 and explaining to Marca the dynamics of the squad and their readiness to finally get underway.
“We’re at the point where we do what they tell us to do,” Thiago explained. “We’re going to do everything they tell us to get to the first game ready to compete. The team are really working spectacularly given the situation; I think we’re going to debut well. We’re used to this situation; it’s been a year-and-a-half living with covid-19.
“I was with my family [after testing positive], and the first thing that came to my mind was their protection, as well as my colleagues. I said this happens to me, so please isolate me; don’t have anyone around. I had it really bad, and I hope nobody gets it like me, but I’m aware there are cases worse than mine, even fatal.”
Thiago began his career with Barcelona, breaking into the first-team toward the tail end of Pep Guardiola’s reign at Camp Nou. Once Guardiola departed, however, he wasn’t used correctly by his successors and, feeling undervalued, joined Guardiola at Bayern Munich.
He enjoyed a successful stint in Bavaria before joining Liverpool last summer; life in England hasn’t been easy, however. “The Premier League has a different rhythm,” he said. “The ball is more active, it doesn’t stop as much as in other leagues. Every game is competitive, even if the opponent is in last place [in the league table].”
La Roja’s preparation for Euro 2020 has been hampered by two positive covid-19 tests; Sergio Busquets tested positive first, only for Diego Llorente to also test positive. An U21 squad had to play the senior side’s friendly with Lithuania this week, winning 4-0. Spain’s opening game takes place this coming Monday evening, when they face Sweden down in Seville at La Cartuja.