Xabi Alonso, does he have to continue the legendary story?

 Xabi Alonso, does he have to continue the legendary story?

Xabi Alonso enjoyed an enviable career as a player during which he won all possible titles, whether at the club level or the Spanish national team.

Alonso enjoyed great intelligence and leadership ability in the midfield, in all the clubs he played for (Real Sociedad, Liverpool, Real Madrid, and Bayern Munich), which made everyone expect him to have a distinguished future in the coaching field after his retirement.

One of the most prominent people who predicted this was his former coach at Real Madrid, Jose Mourinho.

A story of ascension

Alonso brought the curtain down on his career as a player with Bayern Munich in 2017, and soon became busy with the coaching side, coaching the Real Madrid U-14 team while completing a UEFA elite training course in 2018.

Alonso's name was linked to joining Pep Guardiola's coaching staff at Manchester City, but he decided to return to the city that made his name at the beginning of his career, which is San Sebastian, to coach Real Sociedad's reserve team in 2019.

At that time, Alonso's goal was to stay away from the picture for a bit just to learn, and he was not in a hurry to accept the offers that came to him, so he could supervise the training of a team in the Spanish third division, and in his second season he succeeded in getting them to the second division for the first time since the 1961 season. - 1962).

At that time, his name was linked to coaching Borussia Mönchengladbach. Still, he decided to continue for a year, adding to the reserve team of Real Sociedad, and he would leave at the end of the season and head to coaching Leverkusen on October 5, 2022.

From bottom to top

Alonso took over as coach of Leverkusen while they were in the penultimate position in the Bundesliga after 8 rounds in the team's worst start since 1979, but the Spaniard turned the team's situation upside down and took them to the semi-finals of the European League, which is the first European semi-final the team has reached in 21 years. .

Leverkusen finished the season in sixth place to qualify for the Europa League the following season, deciding to stay with the German club despite Tottenham Hotspur’s interest in signing him.

In the summer of 2023, Alonso concluded many deals, including Alejandro Grimaldo, Nathan Tella, Jonas Hoffman, Granit Xhaka, and Victor Boniface. He modified the team’s playing style to (3-4-3) and developed the team’s passing and counter-attacking skills to completely dominate the course of events locally.

Alonso broke many records throughout the season, both in the number of consecutive matches in which he avoided defeat, and the number of points he scored in the first half of the season, before gifting Leverkusen the first title in its history in the Bundesliga last Sunday after beating Werder Bremen 5-0.

Opportunities are on the way

Over his few years in the world of coaching, many opportunities came to Alonso, as previously mentioned, whether by being on the technical staff of City or coaching Tottenham and the opportunities increased after the impressive results he presented with Leverkusen.

Alonso's name was strongly linked to coaching Bayern Munich after Bavarian announced the departure of its coach, Thomas Tuchel, at the end of the current season. Bayern frequently hinted at its desire to sign Alonso with statements from its new sporting director, Max Eberle.

Alonso's name was also linked to coaching his former team, Liverpool, with Jurgen Klopp's announcement of his departure at the end of the season. His name was also linked to coaching his former team, Real Madrid, but he ended the controversy on March 29 by confirming that he would continue with Bayer Leverkusen next season.

Similar stories

The most optimistic Leverkusen fans did not expect the team to win the Bundesliga title this season. Still, there are many unexpected success stories in the world of football, perhaps the most notable of which in recent years is Leicester City winning the legendary Premier League title in the 2015-2016 season under the leadership of Claudio Ranieri.

Ranieri did not last long with the Foxes after that legendary achievement, as he was sacked the very next season in February 2017, with Leicester one point away from the relegation position at the time.

There are similar stories in the Bundesliga, such as coach Armin Veh leading Stuttgart to the Bundesliga title in the 2006-2007 season, their first since the 1991-1992 season, and in the following season (2007-2008) he was unable to repeat the same successes by finishing the league in sixth place.

Different experiences

On the other hand, some coaches left immediately after achieving outstanding achievements to maintain them, including a similar experience in the German League when Felix Magath led the Wolfsburg team to win the Bundesliga title for the first time in the club’s history (2008-2009) season and decided to leave after the end of the season, and indeed he declined. Wolfsburg suffered badly the following season, finishing in eighth place.

Another notable surprise was that Jose Mourinho won the Champions League title with Porto in the 2003-2004 season. After that historic achievement, he decided not to reject Chelsea’s offer. He repeated the same thing when he won the historic treble with Inter in the 2009-2010 season and headed to coach Real Madrid.

The biggest challenge remains for Alonso next season. Will he succeed in continuing his legendary story with Leverkusen and continuing to shine locally and also move to the continental level when participating in the Champions League, or will the team’s results decline again?

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