Xabi Alonso has been told to reject Liverpool in favour of Real Madrid, with a Ballon d’Or winner revealing his two concerns about the 42-year-old’s potential Anfield return.
Alonso is one of the most sought-after managers in Europe right now amid the excellent work he is doing at Bayer Leverkusen. Alonso’s side sit top of the Bundesliga table after 20 matches, having gone unbeaten in that time and opened up a narrow two-point lead on usual favourites Bayern Munich.
Leverkusen could also complete an historic treble as they have made it through to the semi-final of the German cup and are waiting to discover their opponents in the Europa League round of 16.
With Jurgen Klopp deciding to leave Liverpool at the end of the season, there have been plenty of reports stating the Reds want Alonso to continue where the German left off by becoming their new manager.
Earlier on Friday, Liverpool were given a boost as it emerged that Leverkusen are already planning for life without the former midfielder, having set their sights on Julen Lopetegui as a possible replacement.
But it is not guaranteed that Alonso – who won the Champions League with Liverpool as a player – will return to Merseyside. He reportedly has a clause in his Leverkusen contract which means he can leave for one of his former clubs, which has also put Madrid and Bayern in the mix.
Germany icon Lothar Matthaus, who won both the World Cup and Ballon d’Or in 1990, has now given his verdict on Alonso’s next move. Matthaus thinks the highly rated coach would struggle to match Klopp’s impressive winning record, while England is also not as well equipped to help a young coach shine as Germany.
Alonso has been told to reject a fairytale Liverpool return by eventually succeeding from Carlo Ancelotti at Madrid.
Real Madrid tipped to beat Liverpool to manager
“I think his job at Leverkusen is not finished: he was a coach before he sat on the bench and that helps him,” the former Bayern Munich star said in an interview with Gazzetta dello Sport.
“It would be difficult to repeat Klopp’s results immediately, while in the Bundesliga he is more protected to grow and win. Then there will be time to go to a big team, maybe Real Madrid.”
Liverpool would be gutted if they missed out on Alonso. Although, they do have other managers on their radar in case that happens.
There is interest in the likes of Roberto De Zerbi of Brighton, Sporting CP’s Ruben Amorim and Brentford boss Thomas Frank.