Thiago Alcantara has told AS that his recent good performances for Bayern Munich have propelled him back into the reckoning for Spain's international squad.
The 22-year-old made his debut for La Roja back in August 2011, but then spent time on the fringes of the squad as he struggled for a regular starting spot with former club Barcelona, and has picked up just four senior caps to date.
The young midfielder made a 25 million-euro move to Bayern in the summer, and has returned to the international set-up for Wednesday’s friendly meeting with Italy in Madrid.
Thiago now looks likely to be named in Vicente Del Bosque’s final squad for this summer’s World Cup in Brazil, and the Italy-born midfielder believes that his fine current form was due to feeling more confident in his surroundings in Munich.
"News of the call-up made me very happy," Thiago said. "I believe this is a reward for the good work with my club. It is the biggest honour for a footballer.
"I believe I am going through a very nice moment. I see my teammates trust in me, I trust in them 100 percent, and the result is a very good symbiosis."
Asked if he agreed with a statement by Bayern coach Pep Guardiola that his best was still to come, Thiago said he was hopeful he could keep improving under a coach who believed in him.
"I am getting to know my teammates better," he continued. "This is my first year here and I have a great desire to show them, and the fans, and myself, how far I can go. It is an honour to be one of Guardiola’s favourites."
Del Bosque selected Thiago based on his starting role with the Champions League holders, saying: "We cannot consider Thiago a new arrival, he is playing very well for Bayern Munich. They are one of best teams in Europe and he is a starter there."