FC Bayern Muenchen v Borussia Moenchengladbach - Bundesliga
MUNICH, GERMANY - OCTOBER 06: Thiago Alcantara of Bayern Muenchen plays the ball during the Bundesliga match between FC Bayern Muenchen and Borussia Moenchengladbach at Allianz Arena on October 6, 2018 in Munich, Germany. (Photo by Sebastian Widmann/Bongarts/Getty Images)

Thiago Alcantara insists he had to leave Barcelona in order to rediscover his love for football

The 27-year-old midfielder rose through the youth ranks at Barcelona and was sold in 2013 to Bayern Munich after a lack of games.

But Thiago was linked with a surprise return to the Camp Nou in the summer as Barcelona looked for replacements for their departed captain Andres Iniesta and Paulinho.

However, no move materialised with the likes of Arthur and Thiago’s Bayern teammate Arturo Vidal instead arriving at Barcelona.

BARCELONA, SPAIN - FEBRUARY 16: Lionel Messi of FC Barcelona celebrates after scoring his team's first goal during the La Liga match between FC Barcelona and Real Valladolid CF at Camp Nou on February 16, 2019 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)

Capello says Messi “is a genius, Ronaldo is important”

The former England manager talked to the press on Monday and praised the work of the Argentinean footballer and the Portuguese superstar.

“I have always wanted to play and since that wasn’t possible with Barça I had to leave to find the joy in playing football again,” Thiago told Cadena SER.

“To me playing is more important than winning a trophy, in the end, you always ask yourself ‘To what extent I have contributed to the win?’.”

Thiago has since won five straight Bundesliga titles at Bayern and is now considered among the best midfielders in Europe.

Currently, Thiago is with the Spain squad ahead of their games with Wales and England.