Clark thrilled to hear comparisons with Liverpool's former Barcelona midfielder Thiago from Luton boss
Hatters midfielder Jordan Clark was more than happy to hear manager Nathan Jones draw comparisons with him and Liverpool star Thiago Alcantara following the 1-1 draw with Sheffield United on Friday night.
Speaking after the impressive performance against the then league leaders in front of the Sky TV cameras, where Clark excelled once more as part of Town’s midfield trio, Jones likened the former Accrington player to the 31-year-old Spanish international, who played for Barcelona and Bayern Munich before heading to Anfield.
With four La Liga titles under his belt, seven Bundesliga triumphs, two Champions League winners medals and an FA Cup too, Jones said of Clark: “He can be whatever he wants to be.
"If he adds a final ball to his game, then he’s like a Championship Thiago, he really is.”
Reacting to the comments, Clark, who has been utilised in a deeper role so far this term, said: “It’s always nice to hear that from the manager, but I’ve just got to keep performing, keep trying to learn, as I’m still learning.
"That’s the first time I’ve played this position in my career, so it’s just a bit of discipline, when to go and when not to go.
"They keep telling me to stay in midfield, so I’ve got to try and learn that a little bit as I want to try and get forward.
"But as long as I keep getting on the ball and get about players, put a few tackles in, I don’t mind, I’m enjoying it.”
When Clark headed to Kenilworth Road in the summer of 2020, he had been a winger at Accrington Stanley, featuring highly in the League One assists charts.
Although it was a role that was intended for him by Jones, he has played in a variety of roles for the Hatters, including right back at one stage, but is now in central midfield berth this term.
Discussing his change of position, Clark continued: “When I first signed the gaffer told me I was playing right of the front three.
"It’s changed very quick, I seem to getting further and further back, but I don’t mind.
"As long as I’m in the team, I don’t really care, I just try my best for the lads and hopefully we can have a successful season and I can play a lot more than I did last season.
"We’ve still got Henri Lansbury who's a top quality midfielder to play in there as well, Pelly’s (Mpanzu) on his way back, so it's up to the manager.
"I feel like I’m learning it more and more every day every time I play there and I feel confident in there.
"But it’s up to the manager, I’m enjoying it in there, but wherever he puts me I’ll put a shift in.”
Although enjoying his new role, Clark still has ambitions to feature in the final third for the Hatters when possible, as he looked to get forward against the Blades where possible, while also firing off a number of shots in the 2-1 victory over Cardiff on Tuesday night.
He added: “As a midfielder you want 10 goals.
"It’s obviously a bit different when you’re playing a bit deeper, but I’ll take as many as I can. If I’m supplying the front lads, I’ll be happy.
"I was going through a few players and then remembering in my head, he keeps telling me to get back and hold the midfield, so it’s just something I need to learn.
"I’ll probably be a little bit more defensive than I normally am, but I’m enjoying it.
"Sometimes I’ll need Allan Campbell to fill in for five minus as I venture forward, but that’s the thing about playing with those two (Campbell and Luke Freeman), I know that if I do go, one of them will fill in my position
"They’ve got high energy so if it does break down we know we can get back in numbers.
"Allan’s fit as a fiddle, Luke can obviously still get about as well because he’s as fit as a fiddle too, it’s just having that bit of chemistry.
"If I go, someone steps in, it’s just working on it training a lot and playing.
"We’ve probably played together most games this season, so we know each others games in and out now.”