Giorgos Giakoumakis reveals how he and Thiago Almada communicate despite language barrier

Giorgos Giakoumakis reveals how he and Thiago Almada communicate despite language barrier

Atlanta United striker Giorgos Giakoumakis opened up on how he and midfielder Thiago Almada communicate on the pitch, revealing a ‘funny’ aspect as to how the two understand each other.

The 2023 Newcomer of the Year struck up an immediate partnership with Almada upon joining in February of last year from Scottish Premier League giants Celtic.

The Greece international’s connection with the Almada was seen throughout the campaign, as the former Velez Sarsfield played served up two picture-perfect crosses that Giakoumakis headed home twice in Atlanta’s 2-0 triumph over Seattle Sounders in August.

However, despite both being in top-form in 2023 and being on the same page, they both struggle to communicate at times during matches.

“I mean, [Thiago] doesn’t speak any English words,” Giakoumakis said in an exclusive interview with 90min. “And I don’t really speak Spanish.”

Although it might seem to be a frustrating scenario on the outside, Giakoumakis explained that it tends to be rather funny when the two are unable to speak to each other.

“I try to communicate [with him], but if I wanna communicate something to him and there’s no one next to me that speaks Spanish, there’s a lot of body language.

“It’s a lot of body language, and at the end of the day, we don’t really understand what we say to each other, but it’s funny at least,” he said.

Giakoumakis explained that both understood quickly where each other were expected to be on the pitch at different times, which in turn helped create chances in the final third.

“Of course, by time, we improved our connection. And if he were to stay this season with us, even the first six months, [the connection] would be even better,” said Giakoumakis.

“For me, it was all about me and him to realize how each other move in the game and where he wants the ball, where I have to move and all that stuff. It’s a matter of time to realize the abilities and the movements of the other guy.”

Should Almada stick around for the first half of the 2024 MLS campaign, it wouldn’t be a huge shock to see Atlanta near the top of the Eastern Conference with all the moves they’ve made this offseason.

The Five Stripes kick-off the new season on February 24 against reigning MLS Cup champions Columbus Crew at Field.


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