Xabi Alonso has announced his retirement from football after a hugely successful career in which he won the Champions League twice, numerous league titles in Spain and Germany, countless domestic cups and, of course, the FIFA World Cup with Spain.

I’m honestly gutted right now. It may have been a far-fetched and romantic idea but I’d always imagined that Xabi Alonso would come back to Liverpool for one final season when he hit the back end of his career. Now, though, one of the classiest legends of the modern game has opted to call time on his footballing career following the end of his current contract at Bayern Munich this summer.

The Spanish midfielder subtly announced the news when he tweeted ‘Lived it. Loved it. Farewell beautiful game’ this morning before Bayern Munich’s official website released an interview detailing his decision to step away from the game. Alonso reasoned, I wanted to end my career still at the highest level, and Bayern is the highest level. I’m incredibly proud and happy to play for FC Bayern and to be a part of this family.

For me, Alonso was one of those players that just made me love the game. He scored some phenomenal goals don’t get me wrong but he was the first player who really made me appreciate the beauty in passing and how underrated a quality assist could be. Gerrard could do it too but there was a certain class about Alonso’s game that Stevie could never quite emanate in the same way.

 

His vision and ability to see things that others couldn’t is a trait that quite simply hasn’t been replaced at Liverpool FC since he left for Real Madrid back in 2009 and he played a major part in a real golden era of our club’s modern history. In fact, while the 2013/14 season produced some absolutely breathtaking footballing moves and some eye-watering goals, nothing quite screams footballing perfection like Alonso to Gerrard to Torres – goal.

Thank you, Xabi for all of the memories. You always have been and always will be one of my favourite players to have ever donned the Liverpool Red.

Want reminding of just how good Xabi was at Liverpool? Why not relive some of his best strikes for the Reds by watching below. All credit goes to Anfield Legend for the content.

[embedyt] http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jI7ECDeG0Yk[/embedyt]

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